FCA pushes back final report on RDR

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Nov 21, 2019

The FCA has pushed back the publication of its final report about the impact of the Retail Distribution Review and the Financial Advice Market Review.

Previously the update was expected “later this year” but the regulator has now amended the timing to “early 2020”.

In a notice about the evaluation of RDR and FAMR, the FCA says: “Following the call for input and additional research we are continuing with the evaluation and expect to publish our final report in 2020.

“Our website previously said we would publish a further update later this year; we’ve now updated that to say in early 2020.”

A timeline on the regulator’s website, however, indicates the publication is likely to be in autumn next year.

FCA amended timeline 

The RDR and the FAMR aimed to improve consumer outcomes from financial advice and guidance.

In May, the FCA asked for industry feedback to help it review the impact both regimes have had on the market to date.

It received 57 responses from a range of firms, trade bodies and consumer bodies and held a series of stakeholder events to gather further input and feedback.

Speaking at the Investments and Savings Alliance open finance conference in London earlier this week (18 November) the FCA’s director of competition Sheldon Mills said open finance is a topic the regulator has been considering as part of RDR and FAMR.

He said: “Advice should be easy to understand and accessible at any time. Harnessing the data which open finance could provide, means more individually tailored advice can be given to help consumers manage their financial responsibilities.”

The regulator outlines the main themes to have emerged from the feedback to the reviews so far are access to appropriate services, the regulatory perimeter, consumer engagement and innovation.

Stakeholders have raised concerns about not all consumers having appropriate access to a “wide range of services” to help them in their financial planning, particularly those with smaller amounts of money to invest.

Some respondents have warned the problem has “worsened” in recent years and that regulatory costs have contributed to this.

In terms of the regulatory perimeter some stakeholders have suggested the boundary between providing guidance services and regulated advice is “not clear”.

The RDR was launched by the FCA’s predecessor, the Financial Services Authority in 2006 with most of the rules it introduced taking effect in 2012.

Meanwhile FAMR was launched jointly with HM Treasury in 2015 and built on the work of the RDR.

The FCA has also delayed the publication of rules for mortgage advice and selling standards. Its website had said it would publish the policy statement in late 2019 but this has now been altered to “early in 2020”.

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