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Market Watch Response: Below the radar – avoiding extra FSA scrutiny

by: Ben Thompson
  • 21/09/2011
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Market Watch Response: Below the radar – avoiding extra FSA scrutiny
Bankhall has urged advisers to review their systems and controls, as the FSA ramps up its scrutiny of firms’ processes.

Name five things that brokers should make a priority in the next six months to stave off unwanted attention from the regulator.

Jon Round, chief executive of First Complete

Make sure you have the right controls in place to prevent financial crime

There is an increasing regulatory focus on what controls a broker has in place in respect of anti money-laundering, preventing terrorist financing, minimising the risk of fraud etc. Product providers will also be asking more questions on this subject going forward. 

Don’t cut corners when dealing with lenders

In addition you have to make sure everything you do is beyond reproach. There are many who have had to leave this industry due to panel removals caused by stupid mistakes – don’t be one of them.

Be ready for the Competition Commission changes

Make sure you’re prepared for the Competition Changes on PPI/MPPI sales and reporting. Ensure that any earlier complaints have been reviewed in line with the prescribed remedies. Keeping proper records are of all advice, and retaining copies of all relevant documentation will ensure you are best position to handle any potential complaints. 

Look at forthcoming regulation and guidance

Look at the Mortgage Market Review, Retail Distribution Review and the imminent “Training and Competency” guidance. Plan for these changes and think about the impact as soon as the position is clear. Thinking about the impact well in advance rather than waiting until the last minute will help, and sometimes new opportunities will arise as a result which you’ll be able to take advantage of. 

Put client’s interests first

Continue to demonstrate that your client’s interests are at the heart of what you do – it’s often overlooked that a broker acts for their client and a bank “adviser” acts for the bank. Regardless of the profile of the “TCF” initiative, there will continue to be a focus on making sure we look after our clients’ interests in future.

Also answering in this week’s Market Watch are:

Nick Kelly, managing director of compliance support services provider Bankhall

Ben Thompson, managing director, Legal and General Mortgage Club

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Below the radar – avoiding extra FSA scrutiny

Bankhall has urged advisers to review their systems and controls, as the FSA ramps up its scrutiny of firms’ processes.

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