Perspective taken from last week's PIMS conference suggest IFA attitudes were now more positive towards industry changes....but one conference delegate is far from happy with the raft of regulations.
It is quite evident from your article (Wed 23rd June,IFAonline IFAs have smiles on their faces again) that you didn’t meet me on PIMS! I am 49 (almost one of those fiftysomethings to which you refer). I have worked in financial services for 31 years – my entire working life and 21 as an IFA building up this practice.
I have done everything that has been asked of me by the Regulator including pumping myself up to pass the G60 pensions exam so that I could continue advising clients on pension transfers. And I couldn’t be more p!**$d off by the damage that the regulator, in its attempts to toady to the Labour Government, has done to my industry.
My PI insurance premium has gone into orbit as has the excess on each and every claim, thus rendering it almost totally useless to my business commercially yet I am forced to pay it! This is despite having had no claims other than those from the Pensions Review and then only a very few!
We have not sold splits or precipice bonds but we did sell some low cost endowments in conjunction with mortgages – goodness wasn’t that wicked!
My profits have plummeted because we didn’t grasp the nettle and switch to fees three years ago when stakeholder decimated our pension commissions.
My staff spend several hours a day listening to Mozart on hold and being told how important we are, trying to get information out of life companies where the lights are out and there’s no-one in! And we can’t get the information from any other source.
The FSA have just “selected us” to fill in a very expansive questionnaire on how we run our T & C. The questions elicit answers which can only be described as “100 ways to hang yourself” and my compliance director informs me that he will have to think very carefully about the answers he gives – he reckons he will have to waset a day on this. Very big brother don’t you think?
PIMS was great – I drank too much, ate too much, met up with some great old mates and had a thoroughly brilliant time but I did not meet the optimism for the future that you experienced.
I will be out of this industry within three years and it’s all I know. I’ve had enough of regulation with the benefit of hindsight and an industry that seriously does not deserve the responsibility of being the custodian of so much of the Nation’s wealth.
Signed: Seriously p!**$d off from Southampton
Is this the perspective you now have of the IFA sector? Is this how you feel about the market and your own business? Or are you one of those "positive" intermediaries who is raring to take on the next industry challenge?
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