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Old 06.06.2012, 12:21
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Regulation of financial advisers

Principles by which financial advisers, and other financial services providers, approved by the UK's Financial Services Authority (i.e. named on the FSA Register) must abide within the UK:

The Principles 11 principles, including integrity; skill, care and diligence; customers' interests

Fit and Proper Test for Approved Persons, including Main Assessment Criteria (honesty, integrity and reputation; competence and capability; financial soundness)
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Old 06.06.2012, 12:26
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Re: Regulation of financial advisers

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Principles by which financial advisers, and other financial services providers, approved by the UK's Financial Services Authority (i.e. named on the FSA Register) must abide within the UK:
so presumably, they are free to act like pushy used-car salesmen outside the UK then...
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Old 06.06.2012, 12:41
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Re: Regulation of financial advisers

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Standards in markets outside the United Kingdom

As set out in PRIN 3.3 (Where?), Principles 1 (Integrity), 2 (Skill, care and diligence) and 3 (Management and control) apply to world-wide activities in a prudential context. Principle 5 (Market conduct) applies to world-wide activities which might have a negative effect on confidence in the UK8 financial system8. In considering whether to take regulatory action under these Principles in relation to activities carried on outside the United Kingdom, the FSA will take into account the standards expected in the market in which the firm is operating. Principle 11 (Relations with regulators) applies to world-wide activities; in considering whether to take regulatory action under Principle 11 in relation to cooperation with an overseas regulator, the FSA will have regard to the extent of, and limits to, the duties owed by the firm to that regulator. (Principle 4 (Financial prudence) also applies to world-wide activities.)
http://fsahandbook.info/FSA/html/handbook/PRIN/1/1

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Switzerland

Insurance intermediaries are legal entities and individuals who offer or conclude insurance contracts on behalf of insurance companies or other individuals. In addition to stricter information obligations, the core element of regulation is a central register. Registration is mandatory for unaffiliated insurance intermediaries (brokers), regardless of whether they are legal entities or individuals. All other insurance intermediaries (client advisors working for insurance companies) have the right to be entered in the register. All registered insurance intermediaries must meet certain personal, technical and financial requirements. Registration takes place electronically via the intermediary portal.
Finma
The usual suspects are not on the Finma register of insurance intermediaries.
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Old 06.06.2012, 12:49
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Re: Regulation of financial advisers

But NEVER rely on regulations - caveat emptor remains every bit as valid these days as ever.

The regulators require a million boxes to be ticked but very little has anything to do with actual ability to dispense financial advice. There are plenty of regulated, approved advisers out there who have all the diplomas under the sun but still recommend products which under-deliver and are overly costly.

The bigger problem these days is not so much outright dishonesty but the equally dangerous albeit well-intentioned incompetence and lack of genuine knowledge of economics/ the financial world.

Even a top adviser who understands economics and the wealth of financial products available faces an uphill challenge right now in that governments are breaking the market mechanism through bailouts and overnight regulation changes. Not to mention outright manipulation through extremes of monetary policy. All the government interventions have a much greater bearing on markets than conventional free-market capitalism right now. That is why several of the world's most successful money managers have simply thrown in the towel in the past couple of years - they are intelligent (and honest) enough to recognise that they cannot add value until markets are free of government intervention again.
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Old 06.06.2012, 15:58
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Re: Regulation of financial advisers

@Swissmountainair: agree that under the regulated and registered IFAs or Insurance Intermediaries can and always will be some that are offering advice below par. That is, I fear, to be found everywhere, amongst doctors, lawyers, car mechanics etc.
But if you have a problem with one of the duly registered and regulated advisors you know what to do and where to file complaints, you know that they have to have sufficient liablity insurance etc. So, as a consumer/investor you are at least secured in what you do in someway...and the rest is a sometimes steep learning curve.
The problem with the unregulated "advisors" who often hide behind bogus claims of being passported from other EU countries to offer their advice etc you have the problem that there is no real legal course you can take to get your money back if you find you have been cheated and tricked.
Hence it is important to encourage the relevant authorities in CH - like I do in Germany - to take their responsibility as regulators seriously and go after the unregulated crooks. That, however takes some effort by consumers or the "good guys" among the financial advisors, i.e. to collect evidence and make a report and stand behind your report and push it forward and all. Simply moaning and bitching won't change a thing. Hope some here on the forum will have the heart or balls to take what has been already collected as evidence for cold-calling and unlawful offer of advice etc to the CH authorities...otherwise these guys will simply shrug it off, threaten more website like this in blanking out the negative reports and continue to make a lot of money by cheating other people

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Old 06.06.2012, 21:29
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Re: Regulation of financial advisers

Info from FINMA portal on insurance intermediaries:

Quote:
FAQs: Insurance intermediaries
1. What is an insurance intermediary?
Pursuant to art. 40 of the Insurance Supervision Act1 (ISA; SR 961.01) ― insurance intermediaries‖ refers to all persons that offer or conclude insurance contracts. This extends to agents, brokers, independent insurance advisers as well as the sales force members of insurance companies....
3. What new developments specifically apply to insurance intermediaries?
As of 1 January 2006, all insurance intermediaries must comply with disclosure requirements as soon as they establish contact with a new client ...
4. Are all insurance intermediaries subject to registration?
No, only insurance intermediaries that are not affiliated with an insurance company legally, financially or in any other capacity are subject to registration ...
5. Who is entitled to registration?
All other insurance intermediaries are entitled to have themselves entered in the register (art. 43 sect. 2 ISA). This applies primarily to the sales forces of insurance companies....
17. May insurance intermediaries domiciled abroad offer insurance contracts in Switzerland? (Insurance of risks in Switzerland or of Swiss citizens)
Generally speaking, insurance intermediaries are prohibited from working on behalf of insurance companies that are not authorized by FINMA to operate in the insurance business.
Unaffiliated insurance intermediaries may not offer their services in Switzerland unless they are registered in Switzerland; affiliated insurance intermediaries may only work for foreign insurance companies that possess a valid Swiss operating permit.
Insurance intermediaries domiciled or resident in Switzerland that engage in insurance business outside of Switzerland are not subject to supervision in Switzerland.
...
8. Who can I contact if I have any more questions?
vermittler@finma.ch or phone: 031 327 91 00
Generali is on the FINMA list of authorized insurance companies as Generali Assurances Generales SA and Generali Personenversicherungen AG.
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Old 06.06.2012, 22:46
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Re: Regulation of financial advisers

BUt GENERALI from Guernsey (Full correct title is:Generali International Limited is a Licensed Insurer under the Insurance Business (Bailiwick of Guernsey) Law 2002 (as amended) and is regulated by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission) is probably not... at least in Germany they are not registered with the BAFIN and since they are an independent unti/entity, they would not be free to offer their products in Germany

So, me thinks that the distribution of this product in CH is against the law and obviously anyone who distributes it also breakes the law, especially if he/she is not registered as insurance intermediary either in CH in the proper way.

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