The Retail Distribution Review and pensions
Produced in partnership with Leonardo Robinson

The following Pensions practice note produced in partnership with Leonardo Robinson provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • The Retail Distribution Review and pensions
  • Application of the RDR
  • Background to the RDR
  • RDR—purpose and principles
  • Describing services
  • Independence
  • Independent and restricted advice
  • Application to personal pensions
  • Requirements for firms providing both independent and restricted advice
  • Restricted Advice
  • More...

Application of the RDR

The Retail Distribution Review (RDR) introduced major changes to the retail investment market and applies to regulated firms in that market.

This Practice Note will be of interest to anyone advising these firms and to anyone who wishes to understand why the market has changed. It:

  1. provides a general outline of the RDR

  2. looks in greater detail at some particular issues affecting contract-based pension schemes

Background to the RDR

The RDR began in June 2006 as a wide-ranging review of practices within the retail investment market and continued over the course of six years, culminating in a series of regulatory reforms.

The changes brought about by the RDR are described across various consultation guidance and publications of the Financial Services Authority (FSA) (as it was then known).

Publications issued up to 2013 are stored in the virtual FSA RDR Library and can be accessed via the historic FSA website.

FSA—Discussion Paper (DP07/1): A Review of Retail Distribution (June 2007)In 2007, the FSA identified key features of the retail investment market which were causing problems in the industry. These features were thought to ultimately lead to deterioration in consumers' trust and confidence in the investment advice which they received. These included:

  1. complex charging structures

  2. lack of clarity

  3. poor consumer capability

  4. heavy customer reliance on conflicted advisers—structures such as commission-based sales and sales targets created conflicts of interests for

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