I want to see an FCA that is wholly accountable

There has been a lot of indignation from the IFA community this week concerning the FCA – notably the disclosure of the pay scales of the top brass and the 10 per cent hike in regulatory fees this year. But mostly the indignation is founded on the spurious grounds of it just being ‘immoral’ what goes on at its Canary Wharf base.

Now I am not looking to be an advocate of what goes on at the FCA, but like most things in life we tend to get what we deserve, whether that be a Labour or Conservative or LibCon government.

But unlike in politics, where we can alter the direction of government through the democratic process we cannot alter the FCA. The single biggest issue that has always needed addressing about the FCA is its level of accountability, which is currently close to zero. To quote its chief executive Martin Wheatley: “Our approach is driven by wanting to ensure firms are managed in a way that reflects good governance and promotes the right culture and behaviours. Having a narrow senior managers regime will also allow the FCA to focus regulatory resources on those responsible for key business areas and board committees. We want those senior individuals to be held accountable for the decisions they make and oversee. This is what people inside and outside the banking sector expect.”

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I want the FCA to look and feel more accountable, not just the businesses they regulate. If this issue is finally addressed then we might actually end up with the regulator we deserve.

Phil Stevenson

Chartered financial planner,

Ark Financial Planning,