The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement contained several statements relevant to financial institutions and insurers – some announcements of initiatives already planned or even implemented, and some new promises. We will be producing articles on the key proposals. In summary, however, the Chancellor spoke of:
- a review to identify barriers to access to long-term finance for growing firms, together with an investment via the British Business Bank of £400m in venture capital funds;
- proposals for a new regulatory and tax framework for insurance-linked securities;
- a related consultation by PRA and FCA on their approach to authorising and supervising insurance SPVs;
- £500,000 a year for FinTech specialists together with an annual report on key metrics for investors on the state of UK FinTech and a network of FinTech envoys;
- planned updating of the JMLSG guidance notes on electronic ID verification to support using technology to access financial services;
- a consultation on how to tackle pension scams, including banning cold calling in relation to pensions;
- welcoming the ICOBS rules on policy renewals that will take effect in April, and confirming FCA will monitor the effect of these and be asked to take further action if necessary; and
- a plan to incentivise membership of credit unions in communities which loan sharks target.
The Chancellor also confirmed a planned increase to the ISA investment limit, and heralded an exemption for certain UK liabilities when calculating the bank levy charge.