Pensions - Articles - Aegon comment on the FCA Business Plan

Aegon’s Steven Cameron comments on the FCA’s 2020/21 Business Plan*.

 “Rightly, the FCA has changed its immediate priorities and plans for the coming year to rise to the challenges posed by the Coronavirus crisis. We support its short-term focus on protecting the vulnerable, tackling scams, ensuring fair customer treatment, keeping markets working well and mitigating the impact on consumers where firms fail. Advisers play a key role here so it’s unfortunate that the FCA plans a 1.6% increase in regulatory fees for some adviser firms.

 “The Business Plan also gives an insight into medium priorities for the next one to three years including ensuring consumers can make effective investment decisions about their savings. This includes members of defined contribution pensions and those accessing pension freedoms and there’s an encouraging reference to the importance of advice and ensuring consumers have access to it. The FCA had already indicated its Board is considering deferring investment pathways which are intended to help customers going into drawdown without advice with investment choices. The Business Plan makes it increasingly likely these will slot into medium term priorities which makes sense as in the shorter term, with the Coronavirus making markets particularly volatile, attempting to point customers to a particular investment strategy without advice is fraught with difficulties.

 “The Business Plan also gives a further indication that in the medium term, and once the UK has left the EU, that the FCA intends to focus more on principles ad outcomes than rules and process. This creates opportunities to identify when prescriptive rules get in the way of good customer outcomes.”

 FCA Business Plan 2020/2021

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