HM Treasury announced a review into the fairness, transparency, speed and efficiency of the FCA and PRA’s enforcement decision making processes.  The first stage of the review is an evidence gathering process which includes an invitation to submit responses to a number of questions by 4 July, with round table discussions to take place in June and the report due in the Autumn.

Strengthening the accountability of the financial services industry is the focus of the review with the press release emphasising the need for the general public to have confidence that enforcement machinery will be sufficiently robust to deliver sanctions when wrongdoing occurs.

The areas for discussion include:

  • whether the current enforcement processes provide credible deterrence;
  • whether the FCA enforcement referral process is adequate and whether the PRA should publish referral criteria;
  • whether there is effective co-ordination between the PRA and FCA in relation to enforcement (particularly in light of the challenge identified last year by the Parliamentary Commission for Banking Standards);
  • whether the scope of investigations is made sufficiently clear and whether progress meetings should be offered;
  • whether there are sufficient opportunities to make representations;
  • whether the time for making representations is appropriate and whether the factors relevant to consideration of requests for extensions should be published;
  • whether and when incentives for early settlement should be available in all cases and what these should be;
  • how the FCA’s decision-making process, including the Regulatory Decisions Committee compares with the PRA’s which involves a Decision Making Committee; whether the RDC duplicates the Tribunal process and whether changes should be made; and
  • what the UK can learn from international practice.

View Review of enforcement decision-making at the financial services regulators: call for evidence, 6 May 2014