AMI requests FCA defers or reduces fees for large firms

Jake Carter

April 1, 2020

Robert Sinclair AMI

Association of Mortgage Intermediaries (AMI) has requested that the FCA considers deferring or reducing the 2020/21 regulatory fees to be levied on member firms.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has indicated that it will consult as part of its normal fees process on assisting smaller firms for July invoicing.

However, 1,100 larger firms under FCA authorisation are required to make their “on account” payments on 1 April, which represents the majority of the fees to be paid this year, according to AMI.

AMI believes discriminating in favour of smaller firms is unfair on its other members, and outlines that larger firms have the same overheads and costs in proportion as smaller firms.

Furthermore, AMI said, larger firms need to preserve cash to protect their business and staff in the same way as all in the economy.

AMI added that it believes the “FCA needs to be focussed on maintaining the integrity of the market for the recovery.”

In addition, the association outlined that it “does not see the FCA making similar sacrifices as this week it announced the launch of its 2020 Apprenticeship Scheme.

“It continues to operate ‘business as usual’ as the firms it regulates struggle to manage their customers’ expectations whilst working from home.”

Robert Sinclair, chief executive of AMI, said: “We have asked for support for all our firms and have received some comfort. Firms are making decisions today to ensure they are here to support the recovery as we come out of lockdown.

“All firms need the same backing and I call on the FCA to reconsider this decision and not penalise larger firms by taking important cash from their bank at this difficult time.

“These firms are planning cash flow to year end and would really benefit from retaining cash in the business. We believe that Government should be supporting the costs of our regulators at this time.”

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