Published in 1999, this is a review of recent changes in the regulation of retail financial investment services and products, notably the creation of the Personal Investment Authority and the continuing roles of the Office of Fair Trading and the Securities and Investments Board. The attempt to establish new regulatory standards in the wake of the personal pensions mis-selling and other scandals is critically appraised in the light of evidence of the needs and capacities of citizens. The book concludes, firstly that the regulators have not succeeded in making more than a limited progress in preventing the tendencies of the industry to abuse the public, and secondly, that the model of regulatory effectiveness which they espouse, based on creating a competitive market of informed decision-makers, is inappropriate given the complexity of the products in question. No systematic appraisal of the development of retail financial services regulation exists, other than those conducted by the regulators themselves.
Table of Contents
1. The Problem 2. The Foundation of the New Regularity Regime: Failure to Achieve Control 3. Market Changes and Customer Abuse 4. The Road to the PIA 5. The Training and Competence of Financial Advisers 6. Investors 7. Conclusion