Scottish Life's illustration rates have been "significantly better" than they were in January 2012, indicating "advisers are coping well" with the transition to the new regulatory regime, according to one director.
Illustrations are calculations returned by a provider on request from advisers that demonstrate how much a product will pay out following different levels of contribution.
Scottish Life sales director Jim Smith described them as 'the first stage of a product sale', and approximately one in two result in a sale.
He said that company's illustration rates were high and that the vast majority of products were being considered within a post Retail Distribution Review (RDR) environment meaning advisers were "coping well."
"We are only three weeks in, and I can only speak for Scottish Life but our indicators are very positive," he added.
"Illustration rates normally fall of a cliff at Christmas, but December was very strong for us - a puzzle because we were not in the commission world and so weren't operating a ‘closing down sale' as other providers were. To top that off rates have remained high throughout January," he said.
Advisers working with Scottish Life will have had to accommodate a new disclosure regime and illustration system.
However as Scottish Life did not operate an annual management charge before RDR the conversations advisers have had to have with clients around charging will not have changed much.
"As a result, we are not at the extreme end of the commission market, most of our advisers were charging fees prior to the change in the regulatory regime. Things might be different for advisers that rely solely on commission," said Smith.
Despite these comments, Smith conceded that it was very early to be assessing the market as it was still in transition, with some advisers unlikely to have finalised their business models until the end of the year.
"I think this transition will happen gradually and the time required to do so will depend on the business mix of the adviser. Some will have a clear view after three months, others might take as long as a year," he added.
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