The proposed FCA directory that will include advisers’ details could see more people finding “bad advisers”, according to adviser review site VouchedFor.
A LinkedIn article by VouchedFor chief executive Adam Price says this is because the regulator’s consultation paper pitching the directory suggested little around underlying adviser checks being substantively improved.
In the article, Price says: “The FCA register’s biggest failing is not how difficult it is to use. Its biggest failing is that it contains advisers of varying quality – from brilliant to inconsistent to completely rogue. Many of the advisers responsible for the recent British Steel scandal were listed as approved advisers.”
He says if the FCA cannot guarantee an adviser is reliable then that responsibility should be shared with companies in the private sector.
Price says: “We need private-sector innovation to provide more compelling consumer propositions – making the value of advice clear, the process super-easy, the cost low and the quality of advice invariably high.”
He adds: “There is a belief that only non-profit or public sector adviser search services can be trusted [and] it’s nonsense as a universal rule.”
Price also says the FCA should challenge review services like VouchedFor, spreading the burden of identifying bad advisers across the industry by opening up access to information.
The directory has been proposed for next year, and will include more information about people working in financial services than is currently available.
The FCA said last week it would address an issue with its register, after paying out £22,137.50 to a complainant who lost pensions savings after relying on incorrect information.