IFS DipFA Coursework (July 2015) – Baked Beans and Trains!

IFS DipFA Coursework (July 2015) – Baked Beans and Trains!  courses-image

 In financial services, we often take normal everyday words and convert them into jargon.  So it is with Platforms, Wraps and Supermarkets.  It’s nothing to do with travelling by train or buying baked beans!  It has, of course, everything to do with advising retail clients on investment and pension solutions.

This is a very useful and relevant essay for candidates taking the current Coursework assessment with the IFS, as the platforms, wraps and supermarket investment approach is now the norm for many adviser firms and their clients.

What are they?  The FCA has a useful definition for you;

“…online services, used by intermediaries (and sometimes consumers directly) to view and administer their investment portfolios…”

You are asked to explain what these are for the readers of an accountancy practice’s quarterly magazine.


It’s really an essay!

As always with the Coursework, this is really an essay set at QCF Level 4, which is roughly the equivalent of an essay required during the first year of a degree course.

However, it is not enough just to know what these things are!  You will have to make the essay read-able, with a solid structure and avoid over-emphasis on client-unfriendly jargon.  As will all Level 4 study, you need to show the examiner that you understand the products and can apply that knowledge in order to demonstrate understanding.


Start Your Research!

There is a lot of potential research available.  You could do worse than start by actually checking through the IFS Study Folders which has some information on platforms, as well as different types of investments and the tax treatments of such.  There is a huge amount of online research available – maybe start by checking the Money Advice website and searching for ‘platforms’; or by looking into one of the many online investment platforms that advertise widely, such as Hargreaves Lansdown, or Transact.  (These are just examples and there are many more!).

Need more help and guidance?
Anyone looking for additional help in this area can sign up for our  DipFA Coursework distance learning course

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