The FCA has published a speech by Hannah Nixon (Managing Director of the Payment Systems Regulator) entitled The future of payment systems – and the PSR.

In her speech Mrs Nixon discusses the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR), outlining its plans for the immediate future and giving a flavour as to the type of regulator it will be.

On the question of who will be regulated Mrs Nixon states that, in a nutshell, the PSR will regulate those schemes deemed by HM Treasury to be systemically important to the economy. She adds that HM Treasury will consult “shortly” on the parties it intends to designate but it is expected that this will be the big UK interbank schemes and the major credit card schemes operating in the UK. HM Treasury intends to make its decision on designation before 1 April 2015 when the PSR comes into effect.

Mrs Nixon states that the PSR’s vision is to see payment systems work well for those who use them. That means, the PSR wants to see an industry that:

  • is focused on the needs of service users and end-customers;
  • is innovative and open to both technological and commercial innovation;
  • forges new partnerships to meet the challenges of the future; and
  • invests for the future with a strong focus on efficiency.

The PSR’s regulatory approach, explains Mrs Nixon, will be firmly grounded in the principles of competition regulation. Making markets work better will be core. The PSR will also be an evidence-based regulator. It will take action where there is evidence that it needs to do so, and in a proportionate manner. It will initiate its own investigations where it has concerns or where it receives complaints. Where appropriate and proportionate, it will take action.

Mrs Nixon states that the FCA will publish a wide ranging consultation paper on the PSR in November. Key areas of focus in the consultation paper will be governance, access, infrastructure, innovation and more generally, the appropriate boundaries for collaboration and competition.

View The future of payment systems – and the PSR, 24 September 2014