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Concerns over FSA’s principled approach

Brokers have expressed concern that Financial Services Authority plans for a principle-based approach to regulation could leave firms and consumers confused.

The current approach to regulation is a hybrid of high level principles and detailed rules. But the FSA says better outcomes will be produced by encouraging a focus on the best action to take in a particular situation rather than a mechanistic process.

In the FSA’s Better Regulation Action Plan, the regulator summarises more than 30 recent or proposed improvements to the way it regulates.

The aim is that regulation will only be considered if market failures remain uncorrected. It would lift audit requirements for smaller regulated firms, saving around 9,000 companies from having to have annual accounts independently audited, make application packs shorter, reduce the average time from application to authorisation by 25% and cut bureaucracy for approved persons.

The FSA argues this will not result in any loss of predictability in the regulatory approach.

But a spokeswoman for Savills Private Finance argues: “While it’s important to review the regulation process regularly, too much chopping and changing is confusing.”

James Rodea, commercial director of Cluttons Private Finance, agrees: “It’s like football refereeing – there has to be an offside rule so players and fans know where they stand.”


Pre-Budget 2005: Brown launches planning gains tax

Gordon Brown has unveiled a local planning gains supplement to give local authorities a fair share of planning gains to invest locally.The Government is also encouraging LAs to bring derelict sites back into use.

Cheval expects bridging loans rush before A-Day

In the run-up to A-Day, April 5 2006, bridging finance lender Cheval says it expects a rush of borrowers looking to take advantage of the old pension rules for self invested pension plans.


Mortgage Strategy’s monthly guide to the lead generation companies brokers could be doing business with. Justine Tomlinson looks at the options available to intermediaries

Europe: why persist with value today?

By Rob Burnett, Neptune’s Head of European Equities The Neptune European Opportunities Fund remains committed to a value bias. We see a broadening array of opportunities in diversified industries at compelling valuations today. The most complicated part of the market is the European banks. We are currently overweight in this sub-sector as many banks are […]


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