PFS sees record post-rdr membership growth
Just over half of the new members (52%), are aged 35 years or under, comprising an equal mix of advisers and support or trainee roles within advice firms.
The news comes hot-on-the-heels of significant increases in individual and corporate chartered membership levels reported by the Personal Finance Society in February and March respectively, demonstrating a self-motivated drive to higher professional standards.
Keith Richards, chief executive of PFS, said: “We are naturally pleased with the progress on all three fronts and the on-going appetite for personal professional development in general.
“The increase in adviser numbers mirrors a corresponding increase in the amount of SPS certificates issued by the CII during the same period, with a positive contribution from new joiners working in support roles within advice firms.
“This is particularly encouraging at a time when there has been an overall reduction in post-RDR adviser numbers, exacerbated by the exit from advice by many of the big banks.”
Speculating on the chief reasons behind the membership rise, Richards believed it was due to a combination of factors, including a growth in paraplanner and support staff, advisers re-entering the investment market and new entrants attracted to the profession.
He added: “We have always felt more confident than most commentators about the advice sector’s resilience and its ability to evolve, but did anticipate a fall in members after the RDR.
“However, this continued growth puts us ahead of where we expected to be and is testament to the quality of the people who remain and their talent for attracting new entrants to the profession.
“Adviser confidence has continued to grow in the post-RDR landscape and many firms are actively on a recruitment drive to meet the demand for professional financial advice.”
Richards also confirmed that there is a renewed appetite amongst the profession for continued professional development (CPD), with attendances at the society’s professional development events reaching record levels – up by more than 80% compared to 2013.