In the coming months, the AFM will visit dozens of intermediaries in financial products. During the three-hour company visit, the supervisor will pay attention to compliance concerning a number of specific themes such as professional competence and the recently-introduced rules on transparency of commissions. The AFM will furthermore discuss and check the 'self assessment' procedure. This concerns a mandatory self assessment that financial undertakings are required to fill in each year.
The checks focus on a broad cross-section of intermediaries and not just on those with potentially questionable business practices. The AFM often selects the parties to be investigated on the basis of risk and signals. This was not done in the present case. The checks are part of a larger programme of supervisory actions aimed at improving the quality of the industry.
The AFM will visit licence holders in the Randstad who have been randomly selected. This will create a cross section of the total group of intermediaries in this region. Other parts of the Netherlands will be dealt with at a later stage. The current checks concern the provinces of North Holland, South Holland and Utrecht.
In 2009, the AFM will also utilise other means – in addition to the aforementioned checks – to focus its attention on the quality of banks and intermediaries. As in 2008, the main focus will be on dealing with the worst practices. Last year, the AFM imposed a total of 150 measures against intermediaries at the bottom of the market.
The AFM promotes fairness and transparency within financial markets. We are the independent supervisory authority for the savings, lending, investment and insurance markets. The AFM promotes the conscientious provision of financial services to consumers and supervises the honest and efficient operation of the capital markets. Our aim is to improve consumers’ and the business sector’s confidence in the financial markets, both in the Netherlands and abroad. In performing this task the AFM contributes to the prosperity and economic reputation of the Netherlands.
The AFM is committed to promoting fair and transparent financial markets.
As an independent market conduct authority, we contribute to a sustainable financial system and prosperity in the Netherlands.