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Turner vows to review TCF

Incoming FSA chairman Lord Adair Turner has pledged to scrutinise the effectiveness of treating customers fairly.

At a Treasury select committee session last week, he revealed that one of his priorities will be to look at whether the initiative has been successful.

He said: “I think there are debates within the retail industry about how effective the treating customers fairly initiative has been. That is something I want to look at in detail to try to make sure that I am happy with the approach we are using for that sector of the market.”

Labour MP Andy Love commented that the written questionnaire that Turner had to submit to the committee on his appointment lacked much thought on retail consumers.

Turner, who takes over from Sir Callum McCarthy in September, said regulation had understandably been focused on financial stability and systemic risks after the Northern Rock crisis.

He said: “One of the roles of chairman is to make sure you are dealing with problems that events have made clear while continually scanning what will be the future problems. It is entirely possible that in two or three years time, we might – if we are lucky – not have had another major prudential problem and we may say our real problems are conduct of business and retail financial services or some category of misselling.”

Clancy’s Financial Planning proprietor Jim Clancy says: “I guarantee the whole TCF initiative will be changed round again. Lord Turner will order a review but it will be the FSA judging itself and looking to justify its existence. It will end up costing advisers more money.”


Path finders

There are both advantages and disadvantages to being detached from a major investment house when it comes to commenting on the likely outcome of differing market scenarios. You are no longer constrained by the house view and are able to tell it as it is. However, seldom does a distinct line emerge from all the comment, putting the responsibility of coming up with a clear message back on you.


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