FSA seeks ad agency for £5m money management campaign

The Government is looking for an advertising agency to handle a campaign, estimated to be worth &£5m, encouraging consumers to manage their finances better. The brief will be to focus on people looking for help in managing their money.

COI Communications, which will oversee the pitch, is sending out the brief this week on behalf of the Financial Services Authority (FSA). It details a push to promote the FSA’s online tools and information.

The FSA brief comes just a week after the COI made sweeping changes to its &£157.6m advertising roster (MW last week), swapping five network agencies for creative hot-shops.

This week the FSA published an updated consumer guide on its website aimed at directing people to seek financial advice where and when they need it.

Last year the FSA commissioned a public awareness campaign to improve consumers’ understanding of financial services and combat damaging levels of debt. The campaign was spearheaded by the Financial Capability Steering Group, formed by the FSA in 2003.

The watchdog has hit the headlines this summer because of a well-publicised spat between its chairman, Sir Callum McCarthy, and Prime Minister Tony Blair. McCarthy took umbrage at comments made by Blair in a speech to the Institute for Public Policy Research in May. Blair criticised the FSA for creating an environment some perceived to be “inhibiting” to efficient business.

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