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Retail distribution overview

The FSA launched the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) in June 2006 to address the many persistent problems observed in what is now over 21 years of regulation of the retail investment market.

As one of the core strands of their retail market strategy, it supports their aims to improve consumer capability and ensure that firms deliver fair outcomes for consumers. It is thus essential for promoting a resilient, effective and attractive retail investment market.

The FSA have used the RDR to address the root causes of some long-term problems with how the market operates, and at the same time to prepare the market for the future. One of the most salient issues in the marketplace is insufficient consumer trust and confidence in the products and services supplied.

To create the RDR, the FSA took a different approach to previous policy initiatives: they spent two and a half years seeking input from a wide range of industry practitioners, consumer representatives and other stakeholders to get their views on the issues to be addressed and to identify potential solutions.

The RDR should catalyse industry and regulatory change so more consumers buy products that they need and have confidence – both in the products that they hold and the advice that they take. It will modernise the industry, giving more consumers confidence and trust in the market at a time when they need more help and advice with their retirement and savings planning.

However, the coalition government’s plans will undoubtedly impact upon the RDR, as they already have on the FSA. We will watch keenly to see what the future holds.

How will the economic recovery change things?

Once the public is confident that the recession is over and the economy is improving – and can see positive changes by the new government – they will start to think again about moving house, savings, pensions and their investments. They will then need advice and will approach their financial advisor. This will set off a chain reaction, which will improve the state of the financial services providers.

Hays is ready to help

At Hays we pride ourselves on having a number of consultants working with IFS who have in-depth industry knowledge from working in the financial services industry. This sets us apart from our competition as our advice is based on sound knowledge.

We also keep up with the financial services industry by attending conferences, forums and conferences, as well as hosting and attending financial services events like the Money Marketing annual awards ceremony.

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