BLOG: RDR threat to everyday investors

Written by:
Banning commission on investment and pension advice has already hurt advisers - but could damage our consumer finances even more in the long run.
BLOG: RDR threat to everyday investors

If you are already a regular purchaser of financial advice and products through an adviser, you may well be familiar with the Retail Distribution Review, which is due to become law at the end of this year.

If, however, you are an occasional user, like myself, or are even contemplating getting advice in the near future, this new legislation might come as a bit of a shock.

The Retail Distribution Review is changing everything about the way we understand, purchase, and use advice. One of the key measures is to stop commissions on the sale of investments and pensions. This has subsidised the advice offered by firms and large banks in the past and enabled advisers to have seemingly acted on a “free” basis for clients, while the charges were then deducted annually from investors’ funds.

From January 2013, customers who want advice will be charged a separate and transparent fee.

At first glance, this measure seems perfectly reasonable but as ever the law of unintended consequences, which afflicts every policy drive, may render the transparency it achieves on one hand redundant on the other.

Unsurprisingly, several high street banks and many larger IFA firms have decided to focus their services on wealthier consumers who are more likely to be willing to pay, and have made hundreds of commission-based advisers redundant in advance of the changes.

This is going to leave a gaping hole.

The RDR is likely to limit access to financial advice, especially on investment products such as equity ISAs, trusts and bonds that people typically buy through advisers.

My concern is that we are creating a world of financial advice “haves” and “have –nots”. Moving from commission to upfront payments will come as a big shock.

Not many of us need to pay £500 to be told investing is a difficult business and that we can expect volatility and low returns for the next five to ten years as we deflate our way out of our national deficit.

If you have a significant amount of wealth then little will change. But getting the rest of us to save and invest is a pressing problem.

We live in a world where personal investing is key to everyone’s provision for old age. As a nation we have plenty of ill–advised and un-advised debt, but few of us have a plan to fund our retirement.

Removing the commission model entirely does nothing to help this.

Tag Box

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

The savings accounts paying the most interest

It’s time to get your finances in shape, and moving your cash savings to a higher paying deal is a good plac...

Everything you need to know about being furloughed

Few people had heard of ‘furlough’ before March 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic thrust the idea of bein...

The experts’ guide to sorting out your personal finances in 2021

From opting to ‘low spend’ months to imposing your own ‘cooling-off period’, industry experts reveal t...

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

Having a baby and your finances: seven top tips

We’re guessing the Duchess of Cambridge won’t be fretting about maternity pay or whether she’ll still be...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

Money Tips of the Week