Financial Conduct Authority  

FCA cancels permissions for three firms

FCA cancels permissions for three firms

Three advice firms have had their 4A permissions cancelled for failing to pay fees and levies.

Thinking: Health & Income Ltd, Armstrong Investment Managers and Paul Hammond, trading as Asset Trust Group were all found to be failing to meet the suitability threshold conditions.

The regulator was not satisfied that the parties were fit and proper or that they were conducting their affairs in a ‘sound and prudent manner’, and so issued a Final Notice under Part 4A of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.

For Armstrong Investment Managers Limited (AIML), the firm owed the FCA more than £3,000, according to the Final Notice.

The FCA stated: "It appears that AIML is failing to meet the suitability threshold condition, in that the Authority is not satisfied that AIML is a fit and proper person having regard to all the circumstances, including whether AIML managed its business in such a way as to ensure that its affairs were conducted in a sound and prudent manner."

Likewise, Mr Hammond also owed money to the regulator, and was found "not to be open and co-operative in all his dealings with the FCA", according to the Final Notice.

As Mr Hammond did not refer the matter to the Tribunal within 28 days of the date on which the Decision Notice was given to him, the FCA cancelled his Part 4A permission.

Thinking: Health & Income Ltd (THIL), which operates in the protection market, owed the FCA £1,235.23 in periodic fees and levies, and had not been open and cooperative in its dealing with the regulator.

According to the Final Notice issued by the City watchdog, THIL "failed to pay the overdue balance and it has not been open and cooperative in all its dealings with the Authority, in that THIL has failed to respond to the Authority’s repeated requests for it to pay the overdue balance.

"It has thereby failed to comply with Principle 11 of the Principles and to satisfy the Authority that it is ready, willing and organised to comply with the requirements and standards of the regulatory system.

"These failures, which are significant in the context of THIL’s suitability, lead the Authority to conclude THIL has failed to manage its business in such a way as to ensure that its affairs are conducted in a sound and prudent manner, that it is not a fit and proper person, and that it is therefore failing to satisfy the Threshold Conditions in relation to the regulated activities for which it was granted a Part 4A permission."

Armstrong Investment Managers had accumulated an overdue balance of £3,022.11, comprising £2,272.11 for regulatory fees and levies, and three sets of £250 admin fees for late returns.

Paul Hammond, trading as Asset Trust Group, another investment adviser, owed fees and levies of £1,265.39, and admin fees amounting to £500.