Out With The Old…

A reminder that the FSA disappears on 1 April to be replaced by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and, for relevant firms, the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).

The FSA made a commitment that it would contact all regulated firms before the end of Q1 2013 on the FCA’s approach to supervision – and confirm the conduct and prudential categories of each firm – so if you have not received anything yet it may be worthwhile contacting the Customer Contact Centre (0845 606 9966).

If you have not seen them already, the new FCA and PRA Handbooks are now available on the FSA website to allow firms to familiarise themselves. The rules have largely been transferred across from FSA to FCA/PRA depending upon whether those rules are ‘designated’ to the FCA and/or PRA e.g. the PRA Handbook does not include CASS. Further details on ‘designation’ can be found in both Regulatory Roundup 44 and the ‘Guide to designation’. Initially certain rules were ‘missing’ e.g. the status disclosure obligations (‘authorised and regulated’) in GEN 4 were not showing in the FCA Handbook. This was simply because some Handbook text had been the subject of recent consultations and therefore the final text was not available until the relevant policy statements were issued. With the latter in mind the FCA and PRA Boards (or strictly speaking the transitional Board in the case of the FCA) have been working overtime with a wealth of last minute instruments having been made in response to those various consultations and most have now filtered into the FCA and PRA Handbooks as appropriate.

Apart from, say, quarterly consultations, individual consultation papers tend to be followed up by their own policy statements setting out final rules and guidance. Given the amount of outstanding consultations, policy statement PS13/5 (and PS13/5 Appendix) is contains an amalgam of policy statements.

However before becoming too concerned over the sheer volume it is worth bearing in mind that the thrust of the various policy statements is to transition the FSA rules and the only changes made were where essential to implement the Financial Services Act 2012 and support the creation of the new regulatory structure (see PS13/5, 1.1.3).

Firms may find the matrix in Appendix 2 of CP13/5 useful (‘Where SUP 11, 15 and 16 Notifications/Returns should be submitted’) particularly in respect of those submissions that are submitted via email.

Most firms will be FCA regulated and therefore will have no need to refer to the PRA Handbook. However those strategically important firms that will be regulated by both the FCA and the PRA (‘dual regulated’) will need to consider both Handbooks.