On February 6, the Financial Services Authority published its Business Plan for 2008/9. The plan sets out the FSA's program of work for the year ahead, in particular with respect to addressing the risks highlighted by the Financial Risk Outlook, as described in the February 1 edition of Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest.
The document outlines specific FSA initiatives regarding heightened supervisory oversight in areas such as firms' liquidity, adequacy of stress testing and their general operational preparedness for unexpected events.
In addition, the FSA will continue to focus on its Treating Customers Fairly program, the Retail Distribution Review and the Financial Capability Program. The FSA intends to publish in 2008 a report on firms' systems and controls for managing the risk of consumers' personal data being lost or stolen, with feedback on good practice and areas of improvement. The FSA also intends to increase penalties in its enforcement actions to create a more credible deterrent for regulated firms.
The 2008/9 budget shows an overall increase of 7.1%, resulting in a rise in FSA’s Annual Funding Requirement of 6.9%. Underlying costs have increased by £11.5 million (US$ 23 million) primarily due to increased staff costs.