The Retail Distribution Review is going ahead
Today sees the publication of a report from the House of Commons Treasury Committee, making recommendations following their review of the Retail Distribution Review (RDR).
This review started last December when interested parties were invited to submit evidence to the Treasury Committee.
The call for written evidence asked “whether the RDR will achieve the stated outcomes and whether the outcomes could be achieved in other, potentially better, ways”. Our written evidence can be found here.
We were pleased to see an extract from this evidence from Nick published in the Treasury Committee report today, on page 13.
In the report published today, the Treasury Committee provides a summary of the evidence and makes some recommendations.
The headline recommendation, which is likely to provoke the most debate amongst financial advisers in the wake of the publication of this report, is for a delay in the implementation of the RDR for twelve months.
This is in order to allow advisers to satisfy the requirements of the RDR, if they have not managed this already.
In the FSA response to the Treasury Committee, they restate their commitment to the implementation of the RDR on schedule, at the end of next year. Any IFA who hoped this Treasury Committee report might represent a way to avoid raising their standards will be disappointed.
The Financial Services Consumer Panel, which acts as an independent voice for the consumers of financial services, goes a step further by branding the suggestion of a twelve month delay as a licence for consumer detriment.
They quite rightly point out that consumers deserve higher professional standards from their adviser and may continue to suffer detriment from poorly qualified advisers.
Our view of the Treasury Committee report is that it was generally well balanced, drawing on the experiences and opinions of a wide range of stakeholders in retail financial services.
Whilst the contents of the report and the response from the regulator will fail to please everyone, it does highlight the importance of higher professional qualifications for advisers and the importance of clarity when it comes to adviser remuneration.
Photo credit: Flickr/Florin Draghici