The FCA has released its final policy statement (PS17/14) detailing aspects of its implementation of MiFID II, including final rules and its response to the six preceding MiFID II consultation papers dating back to 2015.

This follows the FCA's first policy statement PS17/5 released in March this year. And there will still be more to follow…

The policy statement, which stretches to over 1000 pages, includes chapters on a variety of topics including: client assets; inducements; complaints handling; client categorisation; disclosure requirements; independence; client agreements; and product governance.

However, despite its length and the wealth of material contained within the statement, in the overview chapter the FCA highlighted the following as being "points of particular note":

  • Inducements in relation to research – now applying to collective portfolio managers;

  • Client categorisation – revised for local authorities opting up to professional client status;

  • Best execution – no longer applying to AIFMs;

  • Appropriateness – continuing the FCA's stance that collective investment undertakings other than UCITS, NURS and investment trusts are "neither automatically non-complex nor automatically complex" (!); and

  • Taping – no longer required for all investment services and activities in relation to corporate finance business. Other amendments, such as allowing some firms to take a note, also added.

With MiFID II coming into force on 3 January 2018, the FCA highlights that firms should pay particular attention to applications for authorisation or variations of permissions due to MiFID II. As 85% of the 1,000+ pages are rules, firms have their work cut out – and plenty more regulation to adopt in coming months.