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IAFP and ICFP look to future

The IAFP and ICFP in the United States are looking to the future and a possible merger.

Tuesday, January 20th 1998, 12:00AM

by Philip Macalister

New Zealand advisory organisations are not alone in their bid to merge or form some sort of working relationship.
In the United States the two largest financial planning organisations, the International Association for Financial Planning (IAFP) and the Institute of Certified Financial Planners (ICFP) have begun talking about their future, and that dosen't preclude a merger.
Representatives from the two organisations, which cover nearly 20,000 members in total, met last week to discuss their future.

Both organisations are playing down talk of a merger, however they concede all options are on the table and creating a whole new organisation is a possibility.
The two groups are planning a formal series of talks throughout the year, and having an open process which includes focus groups and surveys to determine what members want.
The decision to forge closer ties was triggered last year when the IAFP endorsed the Certified Financial Planner designation, urging its members to obtain the mark.
For years, the IAFP had remained "designation-neutral" and the CFP mark was a crucial issue in the turf battle between the two organizations.
With the disappearance of the designation sticking point, closer ties in one form or another between the two groups were almost assured
This series of talks might not lead to an outright merger, but simply result in better communications or some form of cooperation, such as holding joint conferences.
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