UK watchdog revokes permissions for three advice firms

Pedro Gonçalves
clock • 1 min read

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has cancelled three advice firms 4A permissions for failing to pay fees and levies.

The UK’s financial watchdog found that Thinking: Health & Income Ltd, Armstrong Investment Managers and Paul Hammond, trading as Asset Trust Group, were failing to meet the suitability threshold conditions.

For Armstrong Investment Managers Limited (AIML), the firm owed the FCA more than £3,000. Thinking: Health & Income Ltd (THIL), which operates in the protection market, owed the FCA £1,235.23 in periodic fees and levies, and had not been open and cooperative in its dealing with the regulator, according to the Final Notice issued by the City watchdog.

“These failures, which are significant in the context of THIL’s suitability, lead the Authority to conclude THIL has failed to manage its business in such a way as to ensure that its affairs are conducted in a sound and prudent manner, that it is not a fit and proper person, and that it is therefore failing to satisfy the Threshold Conditions in relation to the regulated activities for which it was granted a Part 4A permission,” the FCA said.

Armstrong Investment Managers had accumulated an overdue balance of £3,022.11, comprising £2,272.11 for regulatory fees and levies, and three sets of £250 admin fees for late returns.

Paul Hammond, trading as Asset Trust Group, another investment adviser, owed fees and levies of £1,265.39, and admin fees amounting to £500.

The regulator was not satisfied that the parties were fit and proper or that they were conducting their affairs in a ‘sound and prudent manner’, and so issued a Final Notice under Part 4A of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.