Financial planners across the globe are just as aware of the potential repercussions that Dodd-Frank Act implementation and other regulatory issues will have on the profession as their U.S. counterparts, the head of the Financial Planning Standards Board said during a media briefing Monday morning.
The FPSB, an outgrowth of the Washington, D.C.-based CFP Board that promotes professional, worldwide financial planning standards, is in regular contact with the International Organization of Securities Commissions, and comments on policies and papers as they relate to financial planning, said Noel Maye, chief CEO of the FPSB.
“This notion of national regulation is a thing of the past,” Maye said. “Regulators talk to each other. They look at what is going on. They cherry-pick what they like.”
Ultimately the discussion among regulators on the national and global levels centers on consumer protection. Whereas past discussions might have been anchored in a rules-based approach, now professionals combine rules and principals under the umbrella of consumer protection, Maye said.
Maye led the meeting with journalists, ahead of FPSB’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C. The organization also released results of its “FPSB Global Job Analysis Findings.” The online survey of 11,147 CFP professionals outside the U.S. — a 29% response rate — gave a broad look at the state of the financial planning profession.
One illuminating finding: the number of women CFP professionals is growing. In China, particularly, 56% of CFP professionals are women. Also, in Asia the number of male and female CFP professionals is more closely aligned than in other geographic regions.
Several factors are boosting the ranks of women in the profession, Maye said. For one, women used to sidestep financial services careers, thinking it was simply not for them. They have changed their thinking, Maye said. Women also live longer than men, putting more female clients in front of planners. Also, the profession recognizes that the ability to engage with clients is one area that naturally attracts women.
The FPSB found that the gender gap was wider in countries where CFP certification had been offered longer. Overall, there are more male than female CFPs in FPSB territories, according to the survey.