Regulation  

FCA scraps Cheshire IFA over investment deceit

The Financial Conduct Authority has stripped permissions from a Cheshire-based IFA firm meaning it is unable to conduct regulated activity after its director deposited client cheques in an account under his name, despite having no authorisation to hold client money.

According to a first supervisory notice published on the FCA’s website, Geoffrey Harold Arthur Fincher accepted two cheques from a client written for the purposes of investment, including one cheque for £35,000.

Mr Fincher had subsequent meetings with this client in which he provided a hand-written note purporting to detail how he had invested the client’s money.

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However, the firms listed in these notes have confirmed with the regulator that they have no record of such an investment being made.

In a separate instance, other clients met with Mr Fincher and gave him cheques for £10,000 and £15,000 made out to ‘G Fincher and Co’. Again, he provided a handwritten note claiming to outline where their money had been invested.

The money had actually been deposited in an account in the name of ‘G Fincher and Co’. Neither Mr Fisher nor SK8 has ever had permission to hold client money, the FCA adds.

On 28 November, SK8 applied to have Mr Fincher’s approvals withdrawn, leaving the firm adrift with no approved persons.