More than 600 intermediaries face being barred from doing regulated business after failing to submit their regulatory returns on time.

Speaking at a compliance conference, FSA spokesman Charles Roe said the FSA had sent administrative fee requests - essentially a fine - to 4,213 firms for failing to meet the original deadlines for providing the returns.

Fifty per cent of those paid the fee, while the others were in discussions with the FSA except 671 which had already been referred to the enforcement division.

Nine of the 671 had been barred from transacting further regulated business, as reported two weeks ago (News, 9 March)

Roe admitted the FSA was aware of a few problems with the functionality of the RMAR reporting system.

He said these were being addressed and it was hoped the changes would be in place for the May 2006 returns.

Roe added that later this year the FSA would review the scope and value of the data collected through on line reporting.

Norman Cochrane, director of FSA Solutions said: "The lesson for all large and small firms should be that the FSA does bother and is not adverse to taking action against those who are not compliant."