The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) has warned an individual in relation to suspected misleading or deceptive conduct by a registered financial adviser. Following an investigation by the FMA, it concluded that the registered financial adviser had engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct when he:
The FMA has completed its investigation and determined that the appropriate response that is proportionate to the misconduct in this case is to issue a warning to the individual. The FMA must also consider public interest factors when making its decisions, those specific factors in this case included:
All of these factors and that the individual co-operated with the FMA during its investigation, led to the decision not to name the individual concerned.
Sales and advice is a key strategic priority for the FMA whether provided by individual advisers or within licensed QFE firms. The FMA is focused on ensuring the customer’s interests are properly considered in advice on, or the sale of, financial products, including insurance. While the FMA was satisfied in this case that the individual considered that the product was appropriate for his clients, by completing and submitting the relevant forms without authority his conduct was nonetheless unacceptable.
The FMA will take action in order to denounce and deter misconduct. In this case, the FMA is satisfied that the public interest supports a warning rather than prosecution.