The Financial Services Practitioner Panel (the Panel) has today published its Annual Report for the period 2006/7.
Roy Leighton, Chairman of the Panel said:
"The financial services industry and the FSA are experiencing a period of accelerated change. Together, we all therefore need to be ready and willing to respond promptly to the challenges that lay ahead. In that respect, 2007/8 will be something of a watershed year for regulated firms, their views of the regulator's performance and the UK's position internationally.
The Panel is supportive of the FSA’s move towards a more principles-based regime, which it believes is the appropriate approach towards a modern, proportionate and effective risk-based regulatory framework in the UK. In order to deliver this agenda the FSA is investing heavily in its operational infastructure and, moreover, in ensuring that its people - in particular, supervisory and Firm Contact Centre staff - are suitably skilled with a commercial understanding, and properly supported in making the sound and pragmatic judgements that will be necessary.
We very much welcome the FSA's commitment to making those worthy aspirations a reality – and the industry has a mutual interest and responsibility to help achieve this goal.
But, on a more cautionary note, the Panel has urged the FSA to carefully consider the impact on retail firms of its numerous reviews, projects and thematic initiatives, especially when firms are getting to grips with principles-based regulation and the implementation of some major pieces of EU legislation."
The Annual Report summarises the Panel's work over the preceding 12 months and sets out its priorities for the year ahead. As well as containing further information on those issues mentioned above, it includes commentary on the FSA's Retail Distribution and Quality of Advice reviews, its Financial Capability strategy, and the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) funding review.