On 21 April 2021, the Bank of England (BoE) announced that it had updated the UK Money Markets Code which was published in 2017. The Code sets out best practice in the unsecured, repo and securities lending markets in the UK.
The BoE reports that the overarching principles of the Code have not changed but some significant changes have been made in the following areas:
- Diversity and inclusion. The updated Code recognises and promotes the benefit of diverse and inclusive money market participants’ teams.
- Working from home. The updated Code reflects the response to COVID-19, and emphasises it is acceptable to work from home, provided the same level of robust systems and controls are applied.
- Environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria. ESG criteria are becoming increasingly relevant to financial markets. The updated Code adds commentary about the increasing importance of ESG.
- Electronic trading. Electronic trading via platforms is now more widely used than in 2017, especially in the repo market. The updated Code sets out how it applies to such trading and details best practice for using electronic venues.
- Trade settlement discipline. The updated Code stresses the importance of high standards of settlement discipline, in response to concern in the market that the level of non-settled trades has increased.