Doubts over PIA vetting as advisers face 'cull'

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The Independent Online
THE REMOVAL of Godfrey Jillings from his role in charge of vetting applicants to the Personal Investment Authority has increased fears among independent financial advisers that they face a 'cull' when they seek authorisation from the new regulator.

Colette Bowe, the PIA's chief executive, has replaced Mr Jillings only a few weeks after appointing him to run the admissions procedure. Mr Jillings is chief executive of Fimbra, one of the regulators expecting to hand over responsibilities to the PIA.

It was suggested yesterday that Miss Bowe decided to take on the job herself when Mr Jillings expressed doubts about the feasibility of processing 6,000 applications from financial advisers, insurers and others by the start of July. Some Fimbra regulators fear that the firms selected for exclusion will be chosen almost arbitrarily.

MPs on the Treasury select committee have also expressed doubts about this workload.

Garry Heath, of the National Federation of Independent Financial Advisers, said the PIA was losing credibility. He said: 'I have a nervousness that this is not going to be a vetting procedure but a cull.' Banks and insurers are not expected to be refused entry to the PIA.