Your Industry  

Data reveal slow movement to ‘restricted’ advice

Almost a quarter of advisers have identified themselves as restricted in recent data collected by FTAdviser, representing a year-on-year rise of almost 3 per cent.

Of a sample of 10,539 advisers polled, 2,538 (24.1 per cent) said they were restricted while 8,001 identified themselves as independent.

This marks a slight increase on the percentage of advisers identifying themselves as restricted, up from 21.3 per cent in the previous year.

This figure surpasses pre-Retail Distribution Review predictions of how many advisers would opt for the restricted label.

For example, a March 2012 survey by Defaqto found that 70 per cent said they were remain independent and only 10 per cent would go restricted, while 11 per cent of responding advisers said they would offer both services.

A recent survey by adviser consultancy Harrison Spence found that of approximately 100 respondents, 15 said they planned to go down the restricted route in the next 12 months while 74 replied that they would remain independent.

In addition to the 15 who said they will go restricted within a year, another 5 per cent said they planned to go restricted within the next two years, and 6 per cent said they would make the shift within three years.

If representative, this is a significantly higher percentage of firms making the shift to restricted status than that reported by support service provider SimplyBiz in January of this year.

At the time, SimplyBiz said only 6 per cent of 350 of its adviser members had switched from independent to restricted.

Previously, FTAdviser data revealed that despite widespread views that investment outsourcing business was set to take off, two-thirds of advisers say they do not outsource at all.

Brian Spence, founder and managing partner of Harrison Spence, said: “IFAs have always been fiercely independent and, despite the challenges they face, 74 per cent of respondents plan to remain so.

“While this is laudable, we believe that margin pressures will compel many advisers to become restricted, despite a high proportion placing such great store on their independence.

“Deciding how to retain independence profitably will require real thought and many have yet to fully explore their options.”

The survey also found that 62 respondents are carrying on working as they always have, without segmenting their client base.