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Industry tells FCA how RDR has fallen short

“Alongside the RDR, financial advisers continue to evolve to take into account the changing nature and demands of the client, now being more inclined to do some or all of their planning themselves rather than opting for full delegation.

“The market is slowly developing solutions to bridge the gap between DIY and advised, with the pension freedoms have acted as a catalyst here. Whether the introductions of robo-type advice will gain critical mass or not, stability of the rules is desperately needed to allow the market to develop further.”

David Ferguson, chief executive at Nucleus, added that the RDR was only a catalyst for positive changes that were already occurring for commercial reasons.

“While nothing is perfect, I’d say that the RDR has been successful in accelerating the modernisation of our market and that’s obviously a good thing, even if it doesn’t suit some of the more traditional market participants.”

At the end of last year the FCA published the first part of its post-RDR implementation review work, a report by Europe Economics, which drew similar conclusions.

It found that there was no clear evidence yet that consumers have benefited from the RDR, despite the new regime apparently meeting its objectives in relation to professionalism and supply-side cost pressures.

It also found that the removal of commission paid by providers had reduced product bias in advisers’ recommendations, along with making it easier for consumers and advisers to compare platforms.

The fact that the reports into its effectiveness cost approximately £200,000 predictably did not go down well with the advisory community.

The next stage of the RDR review comes in the form of another report in 2017, to be followed by a third review into the long term effects of RDR at a later date.

peter.walker@ft.com