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‘Advisers will continue to drag their heels in 2014’

Reviewing 2013, including the post-RDR investment landscape and anticipating what 2014 has in store, Mr Hungerford said: “IFAs have been slower than predicted to respond to the new regulatory guidance but we expect to see many more businesses restructuring in 2014.

“Sadly this delay is not one caused by a client-centric mindset, rather the fact that advisers can eke out trail commission for one more year. “

Mr Hungerford also slammed banks for their attitude to savers, commenting: “We’ve seen a shift in the investment industry this year as a result of the RDR, as companies make clear where their client priorities lie. You only need to look at Barclays’ decision to scrap wealth management services for investors with less than £500,000 to see that.”

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He said it was a “shame” that the response from many established financial institutions is that they’re unable or unwilling to restructure in order to help less wealthy investors.

Mr Hungerford added: “To us, deciding that people with £450,000 are too poor to be worthy of an expert investment service smacks of hubris and reflects incredibly inefficient operational processes.”

Responding to his criticism of IFAs, Fiona Sharp of Almary Green in Norwich said: “I imagine that some IFAs may be finding it difficult post RDR – there are all sorts of hurdles to get over, such as capital adequacy. It also takes longer to deliver advice because of the rules.”