United Kingdom

Topic: Financial Services

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Singapore company discloses potential US sanctions violations

On 28 May 2020, Flex Ltd (“Flex”), a Singapore-based electronics manufacturer listed on the NASDAQ, disclosed in its 2020 US Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) filing that it had initiated a voluntary self-disclosure to the US Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) on 14 February 2019. The initial disclosure related to possible non-compliance with US … Continue Reading

FCA publishes final guidance for insurers and premium finance firms on the fair treatment of customers in difficulty as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19)

On 14 May 2020, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published final guidance for insurers and premium finance firms on the fair treatment of customers who are experiencing financial difficulty as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19) – see FS20/5: Coronavirus and customers in temporary financial difficulty: guidance for insurance and premium finance firms. The finalised guidance … Continue Reading

Monitor and protect: Consumers and COVID-19

Just as the challenges faced by individuals and businesses during the pandemic are exceptional, so too is the Government’s response, and it is clear that both of the UK regulators expect firms to approach their business in the same way. There are lessons to be learned from the experience of the last financial crisis, as … Continue Reading

Ombudsman publishes insights into complaints arising in respect of underinsurance, misrepresentation and non-disclosure

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) has published on its website an insight into how it deals with complaints in relation to consumer misrepresentations and non-disclosures and the impact of underinsurance. The insights indicate that in some instances insurers are not applying the proportionate remedy rules in the Consumer Insurance (Representations and Disclosure) Act 2012 (CIDRA) … Continue Reading

FCA publishes Sector Views

On 18 February 2020, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published its annual Sector Views publication which considers the risks and potential harms to customers across financial services markets. The Sector Views publication includes a summary of the risks likely to impact the general insurance and protection markets. Each sector view describes actual or potential harms … Continue Reading

FCA publishes interim report on general insurance pricing practices as part of its market study

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has published an interim report on its market study into General insurance pricing practices (MS18/1.2). A market study was launched in October 2018 by the FCA to understand whether pricing practices in home and motor insurance support effective competition and lead to good consumer outcomes. The market study followed a … Continue Reading

PRA publishes PS21/19 responses to CP13/19 ‘Occasional Consultation Paper’ with updated Supervisory Statements

The Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) has published a Policy Statement (PS) to provide feedback to responses to Consultation Paper (CP) 13/19 ‘Occasional Consultation Paper’. In PS21/19 the PRA sets out its final rules and guidance on issues consulted on in the following chapters of CP13/19: Chapter 2: Solvency II: the quality of capital instruments. Chapter … Continue Reading

EIOPA publishes opinion on sustainability within Solvency II

On 30 September 2019, the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) published an Opinion on sustainability within Solvency II. The Opinion follows a request made in August 2018 by the European Commission for an opinion on sustainability with an emphasis upon climate change mitigation. The European Commission will take the Opinion into account in … Continue Reading

EBA report on crypto-assets

On 9 January 2019, the European Banking Authority (EBA) published a report containing the results of its assessment of the applicability and suitability of EU law to crypto-assets. The report states that based on the analysis conducted by the EBA, crypto-assets typically fall outside the scope of EU financial services legislation and specific services relating … Continue Reading

European Secured Notes: EBA assessment published

On 24 July 2018, the European Banking Authority (EBA) published a report setting out the outcome of its assessment of the European Commission’s call for advice on European Secured Notes (ESNs). The report makes 5 recommendations on key aspects for consideration by the European Commission when structuring the legislative framework for ESNs: Small and medium-sized … Continue Reading

SONIA compliance with IOSCO principles for financial benchmarks confirmed by BoE

On 25 July 2018, the Bank of England (BoE) published its statement of compliance (as at 14 May 2018) with the International Organization of Securities Commission (IOSCO) principles for financial benchmarks. The IOSCO principles, which the statement shows BoE in compliance with, ensure international best practice in the BoE’s administration of the Sterling Overnight Index … Continue Reading

Settlement finality protections after Brexit – HM Treasury statement

On 24 July 2018, HM Treasury outlined its plans to propose secondary legislation on the continuation of settlement finality protections (relating to the Settlement Finality Directive (98/26/EC) (SFD)) after Brexit. HM Treasury envisages the legislation will: Allow designations of non-UK financial market infrastructure (FMIs) under the Financial Markets and Insolvency (Settlement Finality) Regulations 1999 and … Continue Reading

Four former directors of online consumer credit broker banned by FCA for misleading customers

On 25 July 2018, the FCA published final notices that it has issued to four former directors and shareholders of Secure My Money Limited (now dissolved), prohibiting them from performing any function relating to any regulated activity: Mark Kennedy. David Mullins. Edward Booth. Christopher Brotherton. The final notices state that that between November 2013 and … Continue Reading

Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Ring-fenced Bodies and Core Activities) (Amendment) Order 2018

On 24 July 2018, the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Ring-fenced Bodies and Core Activities) (Amendment) Order 2018 (SI 2018/897) (Amendment Order) was published. The Amendment Order, which comes into force on 31 October 2018, amends the definition of “core deposit” in the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Ring-fenced Bodies and Core Activities) … Continue Reading

FCA, BoE and PRA approach to temporary permissions regime

On 24 July 2018, the FCA published its approach to the temporary permissions regime (TPR) for EEA firms and funds passporting into the UK. The TPR is designed to enable EEA firms currently operating in the UK to continue using their passport for a limited period after Brexit (the draft Regulations envisage a 3 year … Continue Reading

Draft EEA Passport Rights (Amendment, etc, and Transitional Provisions) (EU Exit) Regulations 2018

On 24 July 2018, HM Treasury published a draft version of the EEA Passport Rights (Amendment, etc, and Transitional Provisions) (EU Exit) Regulations 2018. Among other objectives, the draft Regulations aim to: Remove references to passporting set out in the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and in other UK legislation, in preparation for Brexit; … Continue Reading

MiFID suitability requirements peer review: ESMA publishes follow-up report

On 24 July 2018, ESMA published a follow-up report to its peer review on suitability requirements under MiFID. The report looks at the actions taken by National Competent Authorities (NCAs) since April 2016, when ESMA published its previous peer review report. Follow-up work was commenced in December 2017. The key points from the follow-up report … Continue Reading

Draft terms of reference announced by Payment Systems Regulator for market review into supply of card-acquiring services

On 24 July 2018, the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) published draft terms of reference for a proposed market review into the supply of card-acquiring services in the UK (MR18/1.1). The review is designed to ensure that card-acquiring services remain competitive and fair for both merchants and consumers. The review is prompted by concerns that card … Continue Reading

FCA publishes response to Environment Audit Committee recommendations on green finance

On 6 July 2018, the FCA published its response to the recommendations made by the Environment Audit Committee in its June 2018 report, Greening Finance: embedding sustainability in financial decision making. The FCA’s comments included: The FCA will consult on rule changes requiring independent governance committees to report on their firm’s policies on evaluating environmental, … Continue Reading

FCA publishes papers on cost benefit analyses and field trials

On 24 July 2018, the FCA published two papers relating to the way it assesses the potential impact of its policies prior to implementing rules. The theme of the papers reflect the FCA’s increased focus on impact evaluation which was established in its Mission 2017. The first paper (How we analyse the costs and benefits … Continue Reading

Tribunal upholds prohibition order for junior trader in connection with LIBOR manipulation

The Upper Tribunal has upheld the FCA’s decision to prohibit Arif Hussein, a former trader, on the basis that he failed to be candid and truthful during the enforcement process. In the decision, the Tribunal was critical of the FCA’s focus on the relatively junior trader, who was put under investigation in relation to a … Continue Reading

Tribunal strikes out application by third party in relation to Supervisory Notice

The Tribunal has held that third party rights do not arise in the context of Supervisory Notices, nor do the relevant provisions allow third parties to refer Supervisory Notices to the Tribunal, even where they are identified. Although Parliament has specifically provided for this right in the context of Warning and Decision Notices, it has … Continue Reading