Advisers call for change in bid to counter 'greenwashing'

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Advisers call for change in bid to counter 'greenwashing'

Financial advisers have revealed how they want to get up to speed with the FCA's advice requirements for green financial products - including calls for a regulated 'green' exam - in a new poll carried out by the Personal Finance Society.

A Linked-In and Twitter poll of Personal Finance Society members in June showed 36 per cent want a specialised qualification in the FCA's expectations for appropriate advice for green financial products 

Of the 146 financial advisers surveyed, 39 per cent want an e-learning module while 25 per cent want CPD events and lectures in order to

Regulators and governments around the world want to ensure that consumers have access to green financial products and services that meet their needs and preferences but that they are also appropriately protected when purchasing them," - Keith Richards, CEO, PFS.

bolster their knowledge of how they should advise on these products.

With a growing range of green financial products and services available to consumers, from green loans for small businesses to green mortgages, which offer reduced rates to homeowners who want to buy an energy-efficient property, advisers have admitted the need for further assistance 

Keith Richards, pictured left,  chief executive of the Personal Finance Society, said environmental, social and governance practices of investments are becoming more and more important in society and the professional body will use the results of the poll to shape plans for CPD and educational material on this subject.

 "Regulators and governments around the world want to ensure that consumers have access to green financial products and services that meet their needs and preferences but that they are also appropriately protected when purchasing them," said Richards.

'Greenwashing'

"The Personal Finance Society will continue to we work with policymakers, members and the wider market, as well as our European Financial Planning Association affiliate bodies and the International Association of Sustainable Economy, to ensure appropriate material, good practice guides and qualification units are available to meet the needs of professionals and to ensure consumers receive appropriate information so that they can make informed decisions and do not suffer financial harm from ‘greenwashing'."

The Personal Finance Society's poll came after the FCA announced in October last year that it is looking to create a regulatory environment where financial advisers can help their clients capture opportunities as the UK moves to become a low carbon economy.

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