PIMFA calls on govt to improve financial services regulation

PIMFA, the trade association for wealth management, investment services and the investment and financial advice industry, has called on the government to improve financial services regulation.

It believes that the completion of Brexit has provided the opportunity to reshape the regulatory environment for financial services in the UK.

PIMFA welcomed many of the changes proposed by HM Treasury with respect to the regulatory framework and the accountability mechanisms to which regulators are subject.

However, it has called for the replacement of the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) consumer protection objective with one that focuses on achieving good outcomes for consumers across the whole of their experience of financial services.

In addition, it would like to see statutory mechanisms that enable HM Treasury to order a review of the regulator’s operation and a properly resourced sub-committee of the Treasury Select Committee devoted to scrutinising the work of the regulators and how they use their powers.

It has also called for the FCA to focus on engaging more with industry and a new statutory objective that requires regulators to take account of the global competitive position of the UK financial services industry.

PIMFA outlined that it wants statutory panels to be fully independent of the FCA so as to guard against regulatory capture and encourage greater industry engagement.

Tim Fassam, director of government relations and policy at PIMFA, said: “PIMFA and its members understand that the UK needs a strong regulatory system to protect its status as a leading centre for wealth management and financial advice.

“However, Brexit provides an opportunity to reshape our current regulatory environment to ensure that it better reflects the needs of UK consumers and firms.

“We want to see a regulator that is effective and uses consistent mechanisms for supervising regulated markets and firms, while also ensuring that bad actors are removed from the industry.

“Changing the regulator’s focus to good outcomes would ensure we avoid the assumption that a customer who has not taken action is protected.

“We hope this would lead to the industry and regulator working together to increase the take up of advice as well as boosting saving and investment.”

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