The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has asked for feedback from advice firms, intermediaries and consumers on both RDR and FAMR, some two years after it initially intended to do so.
On Wednesday (1 May 2019), the FCA published a call for input, asking for feedback on how it should approach its review on the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) and the Financial Advice Market Review (FAMR).
In its report, the regulator asked people to answer 24 questions, based largely on consumer needs, the provision of advice, and guidance services and market changes.
Examples of questions listed in the document included ‘what emerging risks to consumers do you see in the market?' and ‘did FAMR or the RDR result in unintended consequences that have caused consumer harm?'
The FCA also asked whether consumers have trust in advice and guidance services and which aspects of financial advice people value. It also wanted to know: "Are there points where the regulatory system may drive too many people to seek advice?"
The deadline for feedback is 3 June 2019, after which the regulator will carry out additional research in the remainder of 2019 and then publish its final review in 2020.
FCA executive director of strategy and competition Christopher Woolard said: "Millions of people look for help and support in making financial decisions every year and the aim of the RDR and FAMR was to help the market develop the right advice or guidance services consumers need to make those decisions.
"Consumers and the market are changing rapidly, as technology, employment patterns and intergenerational challenges change the way consumers interact with financial services.
"As well as looking at how the market has evolved since RDR and FAMR, it is important that our work looks ahead to see how we ensure this important sector works well in the future."
The RDR transformed the advice market after it was introduced at the very end of 2012, when it brought greater transparency to costs in the advice sector. Three years later, FAMR was introduced with the aim of addressing concerns regarding the availability of advice.
This post-implementation review of the RDR was originally scheduled for 2017, but the FCA delayed it by two years in order to give the market time to react to the regulatory changes from both the FAMR and the second iteration of the European Markets in Financial Instruments Directive or 'MiFID II'.
The delay was also intended to allow the FCA to make "best use of its resources" and "minimise the reporting burden" on firms, it said at the time.
As well as assessing the impact of RDR, the regulator set out three main themes to measure the development of FAMR in a baseline report published in June 2017: the accessibility, affordability and quality of advice.