Smaller advice businesses, and that is most of the market, may be encouraged by John Botica of the FMA stating that the licensing process will not be skewed towards the ‘big end of town’.
On discussing consultations on the disclosure regime Botica highlighted feedback that disclosure processes that currently apply ‘don’t work, for you, or for your customer’. I am presuming that this refers to feedback from AFAs, and broadly, agree.
Botica gave some estimates for the number of RFAs that are self-employed, or are employed by corporates. But these were based on AFA’s falling into each category. Whereas a high proportion of AFAs are employed by banks, with RFAs the numbers are, probably, quite different. The answer must be qualified, because the current register is unhelpful (because of either a lack of information, and many non-active entries).
Other comments covered the forthcoming consultations on Code and fees. Useful encouragement was given to advisers to think about:
- Reward structures, payments, and how to manage conflicts
- Products, services, and customers
- Right-sized governance and compliance arrangements
- Processes that ensure you consistently recommend to clients
There is much current material to help RFAs endertake these tasks. While on the one hand delay and uncertainty about timelines may be frustrating but on the other hand, if you are an advice business focused on the sale of insurance - whether a self-employed RFA or a larger advice business - then there is much work to do and the extra time is valuable. I suggest reading the following as a start: