FCA brings action against alleged collective investment schemes: The High Court has held a preliminary hearing in a case FCA brought against the promoters and operators of four investment schemes. The question was whether the schemes were collective investment schemes (CIS) within the meaning of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA). The schemes all had in common that the property within them comprised individual plots managed so as to give individual returns for each investor based on the yield of the plot. The defendants contended that his meant there is no pooling of profit or management as a whole and that therefore the FSMA test is not met and there is no CIS. The judge held that the "pooling" and "management as a whole" were separate issues and that the schemes were managed as a whole. He also said the division into separate plots was done in order to avoid the schemes being CISs. The judge analysed each element of the FSMA definition and considered previous case law and FCA guidance in the Perimeter Guidance (PERG). He assessed the meaning of the word "property" in this context and, having done so, concluded that despite the separate plots, the property was managed "as a whole", and held all the schemes were, and had been since their inception, CISs. (Source: FCA v Capital Alternatives Ltd & Ors [2014] EXHC (Ch))