On 2 November 2023, the FCA published Finalised Guidance FG23/3: Finalised non-handbook guidance on cryptoasset financial promotions (FG23/3).
FG23/3 provides information on and sets out the FCA’s expectations of the communication and approval of financial promotions for qualifying cryptoassets.
The FCA published its final rules (PS23/6) for cryptoasset financial promotions on 8 June 2023, after the Government made the relevant legislation. A central requirement of the FCA’s financial promotion rules is that financial promotions must be fair, clear and not misleading. To ensure firms clearly understand the implications of this requirement for cryptoasset promotions, alongside the final rules, the FCA also published a consultation on its proposed guidance. In FG23/3, the FCA sets out its finalised guidance following that consultation.
The guidance does not create new obligations for firms, but relates to firms’ existing regulatory obligations. As well as setting out the FCA’s views of how firms may approach ensuring their financial promotions of qualifying cryptoassets comply with PS23/6, the guidance also details how firms communicating or approving financial promotions should apply the Consumer Duty to their marketing.
FG23/3 applies to all qualifying cryptoassets and focuses particularly on types of cryptoassets and related models that can cause significant harm to consumers when promoted in a way that is not fair, clear and not misleading. The FCA notes that its financial promotions rules apply to a broad range of communications including promotions on social media, websites, mobile phone apps and many other types of content.