Advisers blame regulation on advice gap

Ryan Bembridge

January 12, 2016

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Regulation is to blame for driving up costs for the end consumer and causing the so-called advice gap, half (52%) of advisers have claimed.

The research from insurance provider MetLife found that two thirds (68%) of advisers said the cost of providing advice outweighs the returns, while one in three savers reckoned taking out financial advice is too expensive.

To keep costs down MetLife said the Financial Services Compensation Scheme levy should be reformed, while it also recommended for “reasonable and proportionate” time limits on Financial Ombudsman claims against advisers.

Dominic Grinstead, managing director of MetLife UK said: “It is clear that the current environment is not serving the best interests of the less well-off. The lighter touch model would be equally robust in terms of ensuring that the best possible outcomes are achieved for customers, but crucially it would be designed to be appropriate for the needs that the mass market are more likely to face.

“Consumers have varying needs and for those with less sophisticated investment needs, a simpler advice model may be more appropriate. This in turn, would benefit from a proportional, lighter touch regulatory framework, which would reduce costs and make advice more easily accessible. Digital technology also has a role to play together with other channels to market, ensuring that consumers have a choice of how advice is delivered to them”.

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