CFPs Worldwide Have ‘Renewed Focus’ on Consumer Protection, FPSB Chief Says

FPSB launches global blogging site for CFPs called Financialplanet.org.

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Certified financial planners (CFPs) around the world have a “renewed focus on consumer protection,” with the Dodd-Frank Act influencing the profession on a global scale, the CEO of the Financial Planning Standards Board (FPSB) said on Monday.

“This notion of national regulation is a thing of the past,” Noel Maye, FPSB’s CEO said during a conference call with reporters on Monday. Since Dodd-Frank, the “overarching theme” is international collaboration.

To help CFPs around the world engage in dialogue about the latest trends in the industry—and to spur recognition of financial planning as a profession—FPSB launched the same day a global blogging site for CFPs called Financialplanet.org. Blogger topics run the gamut, from the state of the profession to the regulatory environment in different countries.

FPSB, which has member organizations in 24 territories around the world, owns the CFP certification marks outside the U.S. and licenses organizations to offer CFP certification on its behalf. The CFP Board, on the other hand, owns the CFP marks and operates its own certification program in the U.S.

Maye said the concept for Financial Planet originated at FPSB’s World Financial Planning Summit last year in Chinese Taipei, “where leaders from the global financial community set out to define the steps needed to establish financial planning as a distinct profession worldwide.” Through Financial Planet, “our community can continue the conversation on an even larger scale with input and expertise from professionals and other key stakeholders around the world.”

As it stands now, there are 137,966 CFPs around the world, with 63,410 CFPs in the U.S. and 74,586 outside the U.S. A recent online survey of 11,000 CFPs conducted by FPSB found that while the majority of CFPs in FPSB territories are male, in China 56% of CFPs are women.

The survey also found that more than 2/3 of CFPs have more than 10 years of experience—with more than 90% of CFPs holding a college degree. The UK and New Zealand have more experienced CFP professionals, the survey found, while Malaysia, China and Brazil have the highest percentage of newcomers.

CFPs around the globe are also mostly middle-aged, between 35 and 44, with some exceptions. For instance, in China, the majority is between 25 and 34, while in Canada, New Zealand and UK, the majority is between 45 and 54. 

Maye also said the online survey also confirmed the fact that CFP professionals around the world want to adhere to a professional code of ethics and standards of practice that put the client’s interest first.

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