Parry was authorised in May 2006 as a sole trader to conduct investment and mortgage business and, from January 2015, for consumer credit activities.
However, since 2013, retail investment advisers have been required to hold a Statement of Professional Standing (SPS) and achieve the relevant professional qualifications, as part of changes following the Retail Distribution Review (RDR).
With the intention of making the FCA believe that she had attained the appropriate qualifications, Parry made six misleading statements to the FCA between January 2013 and September 2015.
In October 2013, she submitted a fabricated document to the FCA, which purported to be an SPS issued by her professional body, the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), which would remain valid until January 2014.
In May 2014 the FCA asked Parry to verify that she had obtained the appropriate qualifications. She then submitted a second fabricated SPS.
“We raised the minimum qualification standards in order to protect consumers from financial harm."
Following enquiries by the FCA, in July 2015 the CII informed the FCA that it had no record of Parry applying for, or being issued with, an SPS.
It was not until November 2015, when compelled to attend an interview, that Parry admitted her misconduct.
Failure of integrity
The FCA stated that it considers Parry’s behaviour amounted to a failure to act with integrity, and that she poses a risk to consumers and to the integrity of the financial system. The regulator has therefore prohibited her from performing any function in relation to any regulated activity.
Parry ceased to be authorised in November 2015 and has ceased trading.
She provided verifiable evidence of serious financial hardship. Had it not been for her financial circumstances, the FCA would have imposed a financial penalty of £157,395 plus interest (or £135,100 adjusted for a 30% (stage 1) discount).
Mark Steward, director of enforcement and market oversight at the FCA, said: “We raised the minimum qualification standards in order to protect consumers from financial harm, and Miss Parry’s behaviour demonstrates a clear disregard of those standards and her duty to be honest with the FCA. We will not tolerate this sort of behaviour.”