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Ombudsman looking at 40 complaints on failed firm

Ombudsman looking at 40 complaints on failed firm

The Financial Ombudsman Service has said it is looking into 40 complaints relating to KBW Associates Ltd.

The firm, which describes itself as as "London's premier investment boutique", filed for liquidation today.

This morning (December 12) the Financial Conduct Authority issued a notice saying clients who have already complained to the Fos should speak to their case handler to discuss next steps, including whether their complaint will be transferred to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

The Fos said it had received 40 cases against KBW Associates since April, most of which were about alleged irregularities with the advice clients received.

A spokesman for the Fos said: "As KBW Associates is going into administration, we’re currently going through the process of making consumers aware that their cases are going to be transferred to the FSCS."

According to its website, KBW Associates Ltd provides a "tailored, personal service" and offers three types of trading account: managed, execution only and advisory service.

KBW's website lists five products which the company is involved in: contracts for difference, self-invested personal pensions, equities, foreign exchange and futures and options.

According to the FCA register the firm has been authorised since 2004. It has permissions to arrange and advise on investments but only for professional investors.

A note on the register states the firm has been subject to a s166 review and was told to "immediately cease all regulated activity" in June last year.

The note reads: "This requirement shall remain in place until such time as a skilled person appointed under s166 FSMA has confirmed to the regulator that the firm has in place a compliant business model with compliant and robust systems and controls."

The firm has been approached for comment.

damian.fantato@ft.com

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