Category Investments

FCA consults on applying SM&CR to CMCs

The FCA has opened a consultation that sets out how it will apply the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR) to Claims Management Companies (CMCs), following taking over regulation of them from 1 April 2019. The consultation also sets out when SM&CR may apply to CMCs, and what action they will need to take. The […]

Ringleader sentenced in the FCA’s largest fraud prosecution

Michael Nascimento, the controlling mind of a £2.8m investment fraud was sentenced to 11 years’ imprisonment in the Southwark Crown Court. Between July 2010 and April 2014, members of the public were cold-called and subjected to high pressure sales tactics to persuade them to purchase shares in a company that owned land on the island of Madeira. […]

FCA publishes direction on recognised overseas investment exchanges

The Treasury is not planning to include EEA market operators in the proposed arrangements enabling incoming firms and businesses to continue to operate immediately after Brexit. Accordingly if EEA market operators are no longer able to rely on MiFID II passporting rights (eg because a transitional deal is not agreed), they may need to have […]

FCA creates new adviser re-evaluation test

FCA and the Chartered Insurance Institute have worked together to create a re-assessment test of the level 4 diploma in financial planning. The new “Regulated Retail Investment Adviser Re-Evaluation” will be available from October. FCA encourages firms to use the test and may ask them to use it as part of its supervisory activities if […]

ESAs report on financial advice automation

The joint committee of ESAs has published the results of its monitoring exercise on automation in financial advice. The ESAs found that automation is growing but that there are still only a limited number of firms and customers involved. Moreover, the risks many had identified with the practice have not materialised, not least because most […]

FCA bans individual

FCA has confirmed its ban on Arif Hussein following a decision of the Upper Tribunal published in June.  Mr Hussein was a derivatives trader with UBS, who engaged in internal chats with a UBS trader-submitter knowing that it would be improper to participate in conduct intended to influence UBS’ LIBOR submissions.  FCA found that Mr […]

ESMA renews binary option ban

ESMA has confirmed the ban on binary options will remain in place for a further three months. The current ban, which prohibits marketing, distribution or sale of binary options to retail clients, expires on 2 October. ESMA has reviewed the specific features of certain binary options which make them less risky and as a result […]

Treasury publishes “no-deal” guidance

Treasury has published guidance for the banking, insurance and other financial services sectors on the impact of what it still describes as an “unlikely” no-deal Brexit scenario. It stresses that increased preparations towards a no-deal were always likely to be necessary the closer Brexit becomes and that accelerating the plans does not mean the Government […]

Law Commission confirms status of electronic signatures

In December 2017 the Law Commission confirmed that one of the projects it would be working on was addressing the absence of explicit case law and legislation that has given rise to uncertainty as to the validity of electronic signatures in some cases. Consequently, the Law Commission has now published early conclusions from its review […]

FSB launches peer review of LEIs

The Financial Stability Board has published the Summary Terms of Reference of a thematic peer review of the implementation of the Legal Entity Identifier. The thematic review seeks feedback from a range of stakeholders on issues such as: awareness and adoption of the LEI in various jurisdictions; types of private sector uses of the LEI; […]

Standard setters consult on incentives for OTC derivatives clearing

The FSB,  Basel Committee, the CPMI and IOSCO have published a joint consultation on incentives to centrally clear OTC derivatives. The organisations want to look at how the post-crisis measures have worked and whether there is a need to fine-tune them. A post-reform evaluation suggests that there are overall good incentives for using central clearing, […]

FCA updates on high-risk products and retail investors

FCA has added its own views on selling high-risk speculative investments to retail clients. It fully supports ESMA’s measures and notes that ESMA has also recognised the risks of products similar to CFDs. However, it is concerned firms will try to get around the ESMA product intervention restrictions by selling to retail investors products that […]

ESMA updates product intervention FAQs

ESMA has updated its FAQs on the use of its temporary product intervention measures in respect of CFDs and binary options.  New questions: state that turbo certificates are not within the scope of the CFD decision as they have different product features to CFDs, including that they are transferable securities for MiFID purposes and are […]

PRA consults on CRR definition of default

The PRA has today published its consultation paper (CP) 17/18 on the definition of default.  The CP follows the European Banking Authority’s (EBA) Opinion on the implementation of the regulatory review of internal rating based (IRB) models. Background The EBA put together a list of regulatory products for the IRB framework review, with the “aim […]

FCA updated guidance for firms outsourcing IT

The FCA has updated FG 16/5, ‘Guidance for firms outsourcing to the ‘cloud’ and other third party IT services’. This update takes account of the publication of the European Banking Authority’s recommendations, and changes to relevant legislation.    

Corporate governance reporting and the impact on large private companies

We have written an article on the new corporate governance reporting requirements for certain large private companies. The requirements will come into force on 1 January 2019 applying to financial years beginning on or after 1 January 2019, with reporting effectively commencing in 2020 for the previous year. We also cover the consultation launched on […]

FCA seeks views on PRIIPs experience

FCA has opened a Call for Input to get firms’ and consumers’ initial experiences of the PRIIPs requirements.  It welcomes comments generally, but particularly in respect of: determining whether a product is within or out of scope; and the practical aspects of cost and risk disclosure requirements. The Call for Input usefully summarises the various […]

FCA seeks feedback on price discrimination in the cash savings market

The FCA has published a discussion paper on price discrimination in the cash savings market. The FCA is concerned that longstanding customers receive lower interest rates on easy access cash savings accounts products than those received by customers who shop around; and that competition is not working well in the cash savings market, particularly for customers that […]

FCA publishes intervention approach documents

On a new page on its website, ‘Measuring our impact before we intervene‘, the FCA has published a group of documents that aim to provide an indication of how the FCA assesses the likely impact of its policies. These documents consist of: a paper setting out the FCA’s approach to conducting cost benefit analyses for […]

PRA consults on regulatory reporting

The PRA has published an occasional consultation paper on regulatory reporting. The consultation paper sets out proposed changes to the following reporting requirements: discontinuance of Prudent Valuation Return PV001; changes to PRA reporting instructions to align with updated EBA requirements; amendments to Pillar 2 reporting templates and instructions to reflect their application to ring-fenced bodies; […]

ESAs update KID FAQs

The ESAs have published some further guidance on KIDs under the PRIIPS Regulation. The additions to the existing guidance provide some additional FAQs and updates to the flow diagrams for risk and reward calculations. New questions include confirmation that a KID must be published on the public section of the manufacturer’s website, and guidance on […]

FSB looks at crypo-asset market monitoring

The Financial Stability Board has reported to the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors on its work in relation to crypto-asset markets. It has worked with the CPMI to set up a framework for monitoring the financial stability implications of market developments, and has been working out the metrics for monitoring that it will […]

FCA publishes interim report on investment platforms

FCA has published the interim findings of its market study on competition in the investment platform market. It has concluded that competition is working well for most consumers, but has identified a few areas that need attention to help consumers. It found: barriers to switching are significant and therefore the pressure on platforms to continue […]

FSB statement on reforming interest rate benchmarks

  The Financial Stability Board (FSB) has published a statement on reforms to interbank offered rates (IBORs) and the development of overnight risk-free rates (RFRs) and term rates. Points of interest include: to ensure financial stability, benchmarks which are used extensively must be especially robust; the Official Sector Steering Group (OSSG), set up to coordinate […]

Andrew Bailey speaks on the transition from LIBOR

The FCA has published a speech by Andrew Bailey, Chief Executive of the FCA, on transitioning from LIBOR to alternative interest rate benchmarks. Although important steps have been taken towards transition, Andrew Bailey commented that the transition is not yet fast enough and there is much further to go. Points of interest in the speech […]

FCA proposes further consumer support and protection in the retirement income market

The FCA has launched a consultation on a package of measures designed to protect consumers, improve engagement and promote competition in the retirement income market. Alongside the consultation, the FCA has published the final report of its Retirement Outcomes Review, an investigation into how the pensions and retirement income sector has been working since the […]

FCA and PSR Chair discusses potential future algocracy

Charles Randell, the recently appointed Chair of the FCA and the PSR, has delivered a speech, in which he discussed the increasing dominance of algorithms in our day to day lives, and noted some of the consequent issues that will need to be grappled with, as  the rise of Big Data, AI and machine learning […]

FCA thinks about price discrimination

FCA has published a paper looking at how it should approach fairness in price discrimination in financial services. It notes that price discrimination is not in itself unfair as practices such as student discounts are widely accepted. But others are more controversial, such as where longstanding customers receive a worse deal than new ones. Views […]

Discussion Paper on building the financial sector’s operational resilience

The Bank of England, the PRA and FCA have published a joint discussion paper on its approach to improve operational resilience in the financial sector. The regulators envisage that boards and senior managers can achieve better standards of operational resilience through increased focus on setting, monitoring and testing specific impact tolerances for key business services. […]

BoE sets out next steps for prudential regulation of banks: present and future

Vicky Saporta, Executive Director for Prudential Policy at the Bank of England delivered a keynote speech on 4 July at The Westminster Business Forum.  The speech focused on the impact of Basel III, which was finalised on 7 December 2017, and discussed the achievements of the reforms, its finalisation and what lies ahead. Achievements The […]

Changes in terminology. PRA updates its Supervisory Statements

The PRA updated a number of its Supervisory Statements (SSs) on 4 July 2018 to reflect changes in terminology, following the publication of policy statement 15/18 “Strengthening individual accountability in insurance: Extension of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime to insurers”. A list of those SSs can be found below. SS28/15 “Strengthening individual accountability in […]

Insurance Europe’s SII conference

On 26 June, insurers, policymakers and regulators attended Insurance Europe’s Solvency II Conference.  The theme of the conference, which was held in Brussels, was ” Two years on and two reviews”. Michaela Koller, Insurance Europe director general opened the conference, which featured two panel debates. The first debate “Two years on – Solvency II in […]

Prospectus exemptions amended

The FSMA (Prospectus and Markets in Financial Instruments) Regulations 2018 take effect on 21 July and amend two of the thresholds that trigger the requirement to produce a prospectus. The changes reflect the 2017 EU Prospectus Regulation and: increase the threshold amount for offers to trigger the prospectus requirement from €100,000 to €8 million; and reduce […]

FCA makes new rules

FCA has made new rules. The changes affect several parts of the Handbook, including: miscellaneous minor and clarificatory changes, including a change to the application chapter of SYSC to clarify that certain rules in SYSC 4.3A do not apply to an AIFM investment firm that is not a CRR firm; changes to make the Handbook consistent […]

HMT, Bank of England and FCA set out approach to onshoring financial services legislation

The Treasury, the Bank of England and the FCA have published information about how financial services legislation will be on-shored under the EU (Withdrawal) Act, in particular to ensure the (hopefully unlikely) ‘hard Brexit’ scenario is addressed, if the negotiated implementation period is not able to take effect from March 2019. The Treasury intends to lay […]

Industry publishes MiFID 2 distributor templates

PIMFA and TISA have published a MiFID 2 Feedback Template and a guide on distributor reporting. It hopes the documents will help firms to meet their responsibilities under MiFID 2 and particularly that the Q&A will help distributors to make compliant returns to asset managers. Comments are welcome on the proposed template until 12 July. […]

Mansion House 2018: Speech by the Chancellor of the Exchequer

HM Treasury has published a speech by Philip Hammond, Chancellor of the Exchequer, which was delivered at the annual Mansion House dinner. In his speech, Mr Hammond focused on Brexit and financial services. He said that the UK needs to ensure that it remains a world leader in innovation, and extend London’s position as the […]

Mansion House 2018: BoE Governor gives speech – ‘New Economy, New Finance, New Bank’

Mark Carney, Governor of the BoE, delivered a speech at the annual Mansion House dinner on how the UK financial system can continue to serve the UK and the world, in the face of major structural changes. In his speech, Mr Carney outlined how the BoE is changing to support the development of the UK […]

Law Commission opens consultation on expanded definition of ‘insurable interest’

The Law Commission and the Scottish Law Commission have published an updated bill that proposes an expansion to the concept of insurable interest for life-related insurance. By using the term ‘life-related insurance’, the bill intends to create a wider category of insurance than just traditional life insurance, thereby also covering other forms of insurance which […]

ESMA confirms end of LEI grace period

ESMA has issued a statement confirming that the six month grace period granted to those required by MiFIR to have a Legal Entity Identifier (LEI), will end on 2 July 2017. ESMA will now work with national competent authorities to develop a supervision action plan which focuses on compliance with LEI reporting requirements.

PRA publishes Policy Statement and Supervisory Statement on Algorithmic Trading

The PRA has issued PS12/18 and SS5/18, which sets out the PRA’s expectations of a firm’s risk management and governance of algorithmic trading.  The SS applies to all algorithmic trading activities of a firm, including in respect of unregulated financial instruments such as spot foreign exchange.  It should be read in conjunction with other applicable requirements, including […]

EP adopts “EMIR Refit” proposal

The European Parliament has voted in plenary session to adopt the so called “EMIR Refit” Regulation. The European Commission has proposed that small financial counterparties (SFCs) should not be subject to the current EMIR clearing obligation where they deal with OTC derivatives at a low volume which would not present a systemic risk to the financial […]

ESMA speaks on a genuine single market

Verena Ross has spoken on progress towards a “genuine” single European financial market, focusing on the role of regulation and supervision. She commented that the EU now has a robust and integrated regulatory framework but stressed the importance of supervision. She discussed the importance of taking the time and effort required for proper implementation and […]

New Chair of the Court of the Bank of England appointed

HM Treasury and the Bank of England have announced that Bradley Fried has been appointed as Chair of the Court of the Bank of England, with effect from 1 July 2018. He will replace Sir Anthony Habgood who has been Chair since 2014.

Up next from FCA

FCA’s latest Policy Development Update heralds a policy statement on fees and levies rates in July. Otherwise its timetable is quiet, with a policy statement on the MMF Regulation due at some point together with feedback on an increasing number of proposals from quarterly consultations going back 2 years.

ESMA exercises product intervention powers

ESMA has exercised its product intervention powers under MiFIR to: ban the marketing, distribution or sale or binary options to retail investors from 2 July; and restrict the marketing of CFDs to retail investors from 1 August. The restrictions consist of leverage limits on opening positions, a margin close-out rule and a negative balance protection […]

FOS Annual Review published

The FOS has published its Annual Review for 2017/2018. Many of the complaints statistics highlight products that are the subject of ongoing regulatory scrutiny and activity: the FOS notes significant increases in complaints in home credit, hiring, leasing and renting, and payday loans: putting to one side PPI, one in four new complaints related to […]

ESMA publishes MiFID 2 suitability guidelines

ESMA has published its final guidelines on certain aspects of the MiFID 2 suitability requirements. The guidelines build on their MiFID 1 predecessor, and broaden them to address technological developments such as a the development of robo-advice and take into account supervisory experience and the results of reviews and surveys. The guidelines also include a […]

ESMA updates MiFID 2 FAQs

ESMA has updated its FAQs on investor protection and intermediaries under MiFID 2. New questions added in May focus on: best execution: a new question addresses what is meant by “other liquidity provider”; client categorisation: new questions look at when and how a firm can assess whether it can treat an individual private investor as a professional client, […]

BoE publishes FEMR update

BoE, FCA and Treasury have published the progress report on the Fair and Effective Markets Review. It says significant progress has been made towards the recommendations. Key conclusions are that: the work on extending the SMCR will achieve the policy intent of the accountability framework already in place for PRA regulated credit and investment institutions; […]

HM Treasury: Cryptoassets Taskforce meets for the first time

The first meeting of the UK’s new Cryptoassets Taskforce took place on 21 May 2018. The Taskforce was first announced in April by the Chancellor of the Exchequer as part of the Government’s Fintech Sector Strategy. Senior leaders from the Government and the financial regulators met to agree the Taskforce’s objectives, which include exploring the impact of cryptoassets, […]

FCA consults on consumer contract variations

FCA is consulting on guidance for firms setting out what factors under the Consumer Rights Act they should take into account when they are drafting and reviewing variation terms. The draft guidance sets out a list of things FCA says firms should take into account, which would include: how valid the reason for variation is […]

Financial Guidance and Claims Act gets Royal Assent

The Financial Guidance and Claims Act has received Royal Assent. The Act: establishes a single financial guidance body, and sets out its objectives, functions and funding details. It also sets out requirements on regulators to make guidance and permits the making of regulations that ban unsolicited direct marketing relating to pensions and other financial products […]

FCA retires retail advice guidance

FCA has confirmed that it will “retire” with immediate effect FG12/15: RDR: independent and restricted advice, and FG14/1: Supervising retail investment advice: inducements and conflicts of interest. It consulted last December on the proposal to do so, as it considers their content has been largely superseded by rule changes, including those implementing MiFID 2.

ESMA sets up central register portal

ESMA has created a new portal for checking the authorisation status of investment firms, trading venues and DRSPs authorised under MiFID 2, UCITS management companies and AIFMs and also funds managed or marketed in the EU.

Up next from FCA

FCA’s latest Policy Development Update promises over the next couple of months the overdue feedback on fees and levies policy proposals with consultation on rates proposals.  No dates are set for any other key papers.

FCA publishes second 5 Conduct Questions report

The FCA has published its second annual report setting out responses from wholesale banking firms to the FCA’s conduct question set.  The FCA notes that the second report indicates progress has been made from the time when 5 Conduct Questions were first introduced, in 2015. The FCA indicates that they intend to extend the 5 […]

FCA publishes new FSCS funding rules

Following its consultation in 2017, the FCA has now published its final rules on reformed FSCS funding.  These rules will take effect from April 2019. Additionally the FCA has opened a consultation on draft rules relating to Professional Indemnity Insurance requirements for Personal Investment Firms, CP 18/11.  The proposed rules will require that policies do […]

EU updates on retail product distribution

The European Commission has reported that consumers still face some obstacles when trying to compare investment funds, life insurance or personal pensions. The report finds that recent EU measures, such as MiFID 2 and the PRIIPs Regulation, should help, but that consumers find a great variance in costs for similar product categories cross-border. It also says most consumers […]

Claims Management regulations published for consultation

As part of the proposed process of transferring the regulation of Claims Management Companies to the FCA, HM Treasury is consulting on draft regulations  that will form part of a final statutory instrument creating a new framework of regulation for Claims Management Companies (CMCs). The draft regulations set out the proposed permissions that CMCs will […]

UK and US announce working group creation

HM Treasury and the US Treasury Department have announced the formation of a Financial Regulatory Working Group, to formalise engagement on bilateral regulatory cooperation. The group is scheduled to meet twice a year

FCA creates new basic advice page

FCA has created a new page on its website explaining the basic advice regime under MiFID 2 and the IDD. It explains it needed to update its guidance to firms to explain the impact of these pieces of legislation. In particular, it addresses how it needed to apply some MiFID 2 requirements (or “at least […]

BEIS publishes Green Paper on modernising consumer markets

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy is consulting on proposals which, among other issues, seek to to improve the consumer experience in regulated markets for utilities, telecommunications and financial services and to ensure consumers buying and selling online benefit from new technology and business models, and have appropriate protection for their personal data. […]

ESAs report on key risks for H2 2017

The Joint Committee of the European Supervisory Authorities has published its report for the second half of 2017.  This report highlights the following potential sources of instability: repricing of risk premia uncertainties regarding the terms of Britain’s exit from the EU; cyber attacks; and climate change. The report urges firms and supervisory authorities to seek […]

FCA and PRA publish business plans

The FCA and the PRA have both published their business plans for 2018/2019. The FCA’s business plan shines a spotlight on consumer protection, including in relation to pension products and high-cost credit, as an area of concern for the forthcoming year, as well as ongoing programmes such as Brexit, and firms’ culture and governance (including […]

FCA updates on Capital Alternatives

FCA has reported that the defendants in its case against Capital Alternatives have been ordered to pay compensation and that it has obtained new undertakings from or injunctions against some of the defendants to protect against the risk of dissipating or diminishing assets.

FCA publishes policy statement on pension transfers advice

The FCA has published a Policy Statement on pension transfers advice (PS18/6). This follows the FCA’s June 2017 consultation, which looked at improving the quality of pension transfer advice. The policy statement sets out new rules on pension transfer advice (most of which come into force on 1 April 2018) and seeks views on additional changes, […]

Complaints Commissioner concerned about information sharing between FOS and FCA

In a recent report the Complaints Commissioner expressed concern about the absence of published information about how and in what circumstances information about live ombudsman cases may be shared between the FOS and the FCA. The complaint alleged that the FCA illegally influenced the FOS in its handling of complaints against a firm represented by […]

FCA sets out supervision and enforcement approach

FCA has published a draft of its approach to enforcement and supervision. The documents follow its publication of its Mission, in which it committed to publishing a series of documents setting out how it carries out its main activities. The approach to supervision explains FCA’s commitment to being forward-looking and pre-emptive, focusing on firms’ cultures […]

Joint call for input on regulating the pensions and retirement income sector published

The Pensions Regulator and FCA have published a Joint Call for Input on their strategic approach for regulating the pensions and retirement income sector. The strategic approach will set out how the FCA and Pensions Regulator will work together to tackle the key risks facing the pensions sector over the next 5-10 years. Roundatables will be held in 3 […]

FCA outlines approach to authorisation

Sarah Rapson has spoken of FCA’s approach to authorising firms. She focused on FCA’s use of authorisation as a way to prevent harm, and its focus on using it proportionately. As a result, the information it asks firms for, and the degree of scrutiny it gives it, has to be linked to its assessment of […]

FCA looks back on past 5 years

John Griffith-Jones has reflected on FCA’s first 5 years of operation, since it took over from the FSA.  He outlined: highlights – specifying FCA’s engagement with pension exit charges, general insurance renewals, interest-only mortgage work, FX and LIBOR issues and reform, MiFID 2 implementation, the Innovation Hub, market abuse enforcement, fixing PPI, the asset management […]

FCA Discussion Paper on transforming culture in financial services

As part of its ongoing work on culture and governance, the FCA has published a discussion paper, comprising a series of essays from academics and industry thought leaders covering: what a ‘good’ culture might look like; the role of regulation and regulators; how firms might go beyond incentives; and how to change behaviour for the […]

European Commission publishes plans to accelerate delivery of Capital Markets Union

The Commission has published a new package of proposals that it wishes to see adopted by mid-2019. The proposals will ‘put in place all building blocks of the Capital Markets Union’, and comprise: legislative proposals on facilitating cross-border distribution of investment funds, to boost the cross-border market for investment funds; a legislative proposal on covered […]

FCA surveys firms passporting into UK

As part of its preparation for Brexit, the Government announced in December 2017 that it would, if necessary, introduce legislation to enable a ‘temporary permission’ scheme for EEA firms and funds which, following Brexit, can no longer rely on their passporting rights to do business in the UK. The FCA has published a survey to […]

ABI publishes framework for the management of ‘gone-away’ customers in the life and pensions market

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) has produced a framework designed to help firms operating in the life and long-term savings market to better identify, trace, verify and manage those customers with whom they have lost contact (‘gone-aways’). The voluntary framework, which consists of 11 principles, is intended to support providers in developing, maintaining and […]

BoE speech on the future of money

The Bank of England (BoE) has published a speech by Mark Carney, BoE Governor, in which he considers the future of money. In particular, Mark Carney looks at how the developments in money and payments technologies could transform the economy (in ways good and bad).        

FCA makes new rules

FCA’s latest Handbook Notice confirms changes to: FEES to ensure the life and pensions intermediation class can still benefit from support from the retail pool SUP to align the Financial Crime Annual Return to the MLRs and PEP guidance. The changes seek to make the terminology in the various measures consistent and guard against firms […]

FCA finalises perimeter guidance on personal recommendations

FCA has published a policy statement setting out its feedback on what is a “personal recommendation” in relation to retail investments, as part of its work on the FAMR. The new guidance, which will be in PERG, is aimed in part at reassuring firms that there is information they can give clients, and can even […]

PRA updates on IDD and occasional consultation

PRA has published an update on responses to certain parts of its CP18/17 Occasional consultation. The update explains how PRA prepared to bring into force rulebook changes relating to the implementation of the Benchmark Regulation, MiFID 2 and the IDD, pending completion of relevant legislative changes.

CMA updates on investment consultants investigation

The CMA has published an update of its progress on its market investigation into investment consultants and fiduciary managers.  Since it started its reference last September, it has, among other things, visited three large investment consultants and held hearings with a range of providers and stakeholders. It has also completed a large quantitative survey of […]

BoE publishes annual report on FMI supervision

The Bank of England has published a report on its supervision of financial market infrastructures (FMI). The report measures performance against its 2017 annual report, as well as looking ahead. The report: Defines FMIs and their importance; Explains BoE’s supervisory role and BoE’s interaction with national and international regulators; Reports on BoE’s supervision over the […]

UK Finance positive on MiFID 2

UK Finance reports that initial impressions of MiFID 2 implementation are that it has been smoother than expected.  While there have been some teething problems and outstanding issues, firms seem, generally, to have been able to adapt within the implementation deadline.

TIA launches asset management accelerator

The Investment Association has announced its new FinTech accelerator for the asset management industry, to be called Velocity. It will launch later this year and will take two cohorts per year of between 4-8 firms, and help them to turn their technology into business-ready solutions.

FCA writes to CEOs on prudential returns

FCA has published a “Dear CEO” letter setting out its comments on the quality of prudential returns. It is concerned that a significant number of firms are submitting returns that contain inaccurate or incomplete data and, as a result, feels it needs to ask CEOs of IFPRU and BIPRU firms to review their firms’ regulatory […]

FCA reminds firms on pensions transfer advice

FCA has published a letter from Megan Butler reminding firms of FCA’s expectations when they are advising on pension transfers. The letter contains details of key publications from FCA on the topic.

FCA updates on service standards

FCA’s new-look update on its service standards shows that it met most of its targets for various regulatory tasks, including authorisations, passport notifications, dealing with queries and customer satisfaction. However, it did fall slightly short on some applications, particularly consumer-credit related ones, and some of its work on passports.

The three ESAs warn consumers on the risk of virtual currencies

The three ESAs (consisting of the European Securities and Markets Authority, the European Banking Authority and the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority) issued a warning to consumers on the high risks of buying and/or holding virtual currencies such as Bitcoin, Ether and Ripple (VCs). The warning follows the fact that there has been an increasing number […]

ESMA publishes 2018 Risk Assessment Work Programme

ESMA has published its Risk Assessment Work Programme for 2018, in which it establishes priorities for assessing securities market risks. ESMA will complement ongoing market monitoring through its semi-annual Report on Trends, Risks and Vulnerabilities, and its Quarterly Risk Dashboards, by launching an annual series on EU derivatives markets (based on EMIR data) and an […]

Commission updates Brexit pages

The European Commission has updated its website to provide information on how Brexit will affect banking and finance rules. Separate pages address: markets in financial instruments banking and payment services post-trade issues asset management credit rating agencies insurance and reinsurance and statutory audit Each page looks at the impact of withdrawal on authorisations, contracts and […]

Court dismisses appeal against spread-bet losses

The Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal by a customer of a spread-betting company (IG Index), who claimed IG Index’s failure to close out in accordance with its terms of business caused him to incur greater losses than need have been the case. IG Index’s terms said, among other things, that it had absolute […]

FCA explains perimeter to Treasury Committee

Andrew Bailey has written to the Treasury Select Committee setting out a summary of the powers “FCA does not have”. It has been asked many questions in the context of the RBS GRG investigation. The letter sets out: FCA’s basic remit over regulated activities and its role as the UKLA as well as its powers […]

ESMA updates MiFID 2 FAQ

ESMA has updated its Q&As on transparency and market structure issues under MiFID 2. The latest additions cover pre-trade transparency waivers.

FCA review of Board Effectiveness

The FCA has published a report of the independent review into the effectiveness of its Board. The review was undertaken by Independent Audit Limited. The review involved interviews with Board members, a review of documentation and observance of Board and committee meetings. The report also sets out the following broad themes: aligning of activities into […]

FCA publishes views on PRIIPs performance scenario concerns

FCA has published a statement following concerns raised about the performance scenarios in the PRIIPs KID. Some firms have noted that occasionally this information may appear to optimistic and risk misleading consumers. FCA says that where a manufacturer is worried the scenarios in their KID are too optimistic, it may provide explanatory materials to put […]

EIOPA translates official IBIPs Guidelines

The European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) has published official translations of guidelines under the IDD relating to insurance-based investment products (IBIPs) which incorporate a structure that makes it difficult for the customer to understand the risks involved. In so doing, the guidelines seek to minimise risks of consumer detriment arising from mis-sold IBIPs. […]

FCA consults on widening FOS access for small businesses

FCA has opened a consultation on plans to provide more small businesses with access to FOS. The changes proposed would allow FOS complaints redress to approximately 16,000 SMEs, charities and trusts, by changing the eligibility criteria to access FOS. Under the proposals, eligible businesses would be those that satisfy the following criteria: Under 50 employees; […]

FCA publishes policy statement on client money and unbreakable deposits

FCA has published a policy statement in response to feedback received from a consultation on depositing client money in unbreakable deposits. The consultation responded to difficulties faced by investment firms in depositing client money at banks. This was deemed to be partly due to the combined effects of the liquidity rules applicable to banks and […]

ESMA updates transparency calculations for MiFID II/MiFIR

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published an extended version of MiFID II/MiFIR transitional transparency calculations (TTC) for equity and bond instruments. ESMA has added the applicable TTC for: equity instruments, traded for the first time on a trading venue between 13 September 2017 and 2 January 2018 (included); and bond instruments (except ETCs […]

FSCS PUBLISHES PLAN AND BUDGET FOR 2018/2019

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) has published its Plan and Budget for 2018/2019. The Plan and Budget outlines the FSCS’s expected management costs and initial levy forecasts financial services firms will pay next year. The FSCS expects to levy the industry £336m, for the nine months to 31 March 2019, up from £320m in […]