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UK's FCA to examine asset management fees, pensions

[LONDON] The UK's Financial Conduct Authority is to launch a market study on asset management to examine charges paid by investors, the regulator said on Tuesday, as it laid out its business plan for the coming year.

Other areas of focus include examining whether pension firms are helping consumers make the right choices, following an overhaul announced in 2014 which eased requirements on people to buy annuities as part of their pension.

"The business plan is set against the backdrop of the most fundamental changes to pension policy we have seen in over a generation," said Chief Executive Martin Wheatley.

The FCA said it would look into sales practices of pension providers following last year's review of annuities sales.

The regulator will also examine how much flexibility there is for consumers in the mortgages market, as well as a study on the use of "big data" in the insurance market.

In its risk outlook, published with the business plan, the FCA said it was particularly looking at the importance of companies' systems and controls in preventing financial crime.