The FCA today launched a Call for Input to help shape its work on improving the consumer investment market.
The regulator said that too often consumers receive lower returns than they should because of unsuitable products with high fees.
The Call for Input is seeking views on what more can be done to help the market offer products that meet straightforward needs, how people can understand the risks of higher risk investments, the regulation of financial promotions, protecting consumers from scams, and what more the FCA can do to “ensure that when people lose money because of an act or omission of a regulated firm, they are appropriately compensated and that it is paid for fairly by those who cause the loss.”
Aegon shared concerns that the review could lead to even higher levies for financial advisory firms.
Steven Cameron, pensions director at Aegon, said: “The FCA’s Call for Input on the Consumer Investment Market is extremely wide ranging and brings back memories of the Financial Advice Market Review. Topics under consideration include mass market versus high risk investments, the advice versus guidance debate, consumer compensation and how to ensure ‘polluter pays’, scam prevention and technological innovation. There’s likely to be something here that every adviser firm across the UK will have an interest in.
“It’s important that the FCA does keep a focus on protecting people from scams and stamping out the small minority of poor advice. But this needs very different treatment from supporting the growth of a market which can support more people in the way that works for them, cost effectively. That could be holistic ongoing advice, one-off or simplified advice, more tailored forms of guidance or better constructed information.
“At the heart of this, we need to make sure the vast majority of highly professional financial advice firms aren’t burdened with ever increasing FSCS levies or Professional Indemnity premiums.”