AMI hits out at FSA over fees

The Association of Mortgage Intermediaries (AMI) has criticised the FSA over its latest fees consultation.

AMI director Robert Sinclair said the consultation had left the “harsh taste of disappointment”.

He added: “AMI listened hard to the FSA arguments in their consultation, but have now discovered that between consultation and policy statement that the number of firms and their income levels had decreased significantly. There is concern that the consultation was based on historic data to mask the real impacts of the final rules. At best it lacked competence, at worst it appears underhand.

“Whilst the FSA are right and many small firms will only pay the minimum levy of £1k for the FSA, firms may be in for a big shock. With the 10% increase in FSA fees for brokers, we also have higher MAS costs, and for those carrying insurance permissions, the FSCS levy to cover PPI will make a huge difference. Total regulatory costs could rise by more than 40%.

“The policy statement explained the changes in a short paragraph, but there has been no dialogue, or openness via the process. The PR ignores it totally. I am concerned that the newly divided FSA risks losing industry respect. In the creation of a new statutory base, the new FCA is meant to be a new beast.

“With fewer firms and pressure on incomes, the new regulatory framework must reduce its costs, not continue to load their expenses on to responsible firms.”