On February 8, 2016, the FCA published a Policy Statement on Fair, Reasonable and Non Discriminatory access to regulated benchmarks, setting out the feedback it received to its consultation last year. The Policy Statement includes the FCA’s final rules which affect the administrators of eight regulated benchmarks: the ICE London Inter Bank Offered Rate (ICE LIBOR), the Sterling Overnight Index Average (SONIA), the Repurchase Overnight Index Average (RONIA), the WM/Reuters London 4pm Closing Spot Rate, the ICE Swap Rate, the LBMA Gold Price, the LBMA Silver Price and the ICE Brent Index. The rules go beyond the general competition powers of the FCA and include specific requirements on benchmark administrators in relation to access. The FCA rules are changed from those in the initial consultation in being limited to users that are exchanges, clearing houses and multilateral trading facilities, consistent with EU regulations, in particular the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (which is due to apply from January 3, 2017). The FCA’s final rules enter into force on April 1, 2016.

The Policy Statement is available at: http://www.fca.org.uk/static/fca/documents/policy-statements/ps16-04.pdf.