FAIR Canada: More investors seek regulations to ensure job title accuracy

New survey shows investors are confused about two particular positions

FAIR Canada: More investors seek regulations to ensure job title accuracy


Results from a new survey by FAIR Canada has highlighted the demand from investors for accuracy in job titles within the financial services industry.

The Job Title Survey has revealed that more investors are confused about job titles in the sector, with a consensus that titles should be able to accurately convey an individual’s expertise and level of accountability, as well as qualifications for their job.

In particular, investors find it challenging to distinguish the accountabilities and responsibilities of a financial advisor when compared to that of a financial planner. They are unable to discern which title requires more education and training before this title can be used.

“The survey highlights potential issues in safeguarding consumers within the financial services sector. Considering these key findings, regulators must ensure that investors are not misled by varying titles, including the title of financial advisor,” said Jean-Paul Bureaud, executive director of FAIR Canada.

“Moreover, allowing individuals with diverse expertise and qualifications to use identical titles only exacerbates the problem,” he said.

The survey was conducted to analyze the effectiveness of job titles in helping investors understand the key stakeholders to reach out to for consultation and advice. Majority of investors (95%) found it crucial that individuals using the job title of financial advisor should possess a uniform level of training and a consistent set of skills across the financial services industry.

“The survey suggests the need to address investors’ expectations more effectively. FAIR Canada will persist in advocating for improvements to existing title protection frameworks to ensure more uniformity in standards and a level playing field among title users. As we move forward, we are committed to developing practical solutions that mitigate potentially misleading titles and reduce investor confusion,” Bureaud said.

Other key findings of the survey include:

  • 95% of respondents support the establishment of a common standard and regulatory framework for anyone using the title of Financial Advisor
  • 91% agree that governments should ensure financial advisors meet high standards before they can provide financial advice
  • 77% agree the governments should require more rigorous training for licensing financial advisors
  • 92% of respondents agree that individuals using the title of Financial Advisor should be proficient in all core areas of personal finance
  • 72% agree that “salesperson” should be required in a title if an individual’s primary responsibility is to sell financial products as compared to provide advice

Have thoughts about this story? Leave your comments below.