Since the implementation of the FCA’s Retail Distribution Review (RDR) at the beginning of 2013, ifs University College has offered Statements of Professional Standing (SPS) to retail investment advisors, both members and non-members, as part of its role as an FCA Accredited Body. It has also offered Certificates of Professional Achievement (CPA) to those who have met the same educational and CPD standards as SPS holders but who do not give professional retail investment advice (e.g supervisors).
Until now ifs University College SPS and CPAs have been delivered through the Institute of Financial Services - a part of the organisation dedicated to supporting professionalism in the sector.
As of September 2016 all SPS and CPAs are issued by The London Institute of Banking & Finance. This new arrangement is in keeping with one of the key findings from discussions with the sector which is the need for all activity to be offered through one, highly recognisable body. We believe this will be of benefit to our SPS and CPA holders, particularly those who have also undertaken their professional qualifications with us, and to their clients, for whom their advisor’s professional credentials will be clearer.
To avoid any confusion for students or employers as a result of this transition, for a limited time, SPS and CPA certificates will carry a reference to link the new and old names.
Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)
We have informed the FCA of our new name to ensure that the name on SPS and CPA certificates is consistent with the list of Accredited Bodies in the FCA Handbook. Advisers holding an Institute of Financial Services SPS do not need to take any action.
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