FCA proposes an end to opt-out selling

first_img Incentive conflicts, regulatory burdens on AMF agenda Former Wells Fargo exec sanctioned NASAA warns investors about cross-selling risks The FCA is making the move after its research into insurance add-ons found that opt-out selling often results in consumers purchasing an insurance product they don’t need. Some consumers are not even aware they have bought an add-on, it notes. “Too often consumers are not able to make an informed decision on whether they need or want the insurance that is part of the opt-out package,” it notes. The ban would apply to any add-on sales of regulated or unregulated products offered alongside financial primary products. The FCA says that it will consult with the industry on the proposals to ban opt-outs, which will include new guidance for firms on providing information to consumers about add-ons in the sales process. “This is about ensuring consumers can make the right decision on what add-on insurance they do or don’t need. Forgetting to un-tick a box at the end of a purchase is not making an informed choice,” said Christopher Woolard, director of strategy and competition at the FCA. “Our work shows that the opt-out model means too often consumers are buying a product when they have not been able to give any thought to whether or not they need it. These proposals will mean that consumers will be in a better position to decide what they want and consider the options available to them. Fewer consumers will end up with products they didn’t want or don’t even know they own,” Woolard added. In circumstances where firms do offer add-on products, the FCA wants them to provide consumers with better disclosure that will allow them to make an informed choice on what, if any, add-on products they need, and to identify the most appropriate package for their needs. The proposed guidance encourages firms to introduce the most common add-ons to consumers earlier in the sales process, and to make it easier for them to compare packages of the primary product and add-ons. The consultation period ends June 25. Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Keywords Sales practices,  United KingdomCompanies Financial Conduct Authority center_img James Langton British regulators are putting a stop to financial firms using selling practices that require consumers to opt-out of certain products. The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said Wednesday it will ban opt-out selling in financial services markets — which is the practice of defaulting consumers into buying a product that they must opt out of to refuse. For example, some firms currently use pre-ticked boxes to sell add-on insurance. Related news Facebook LinkedIn Twitterlast_img read more