Since our last publication, the FCA has published Handbook Notice 48. In other news, the FCA has announced a thematic review of the debt management sector.

UK

FCA Handbook Notice 48

The FCA has published Handbook Notice 48, setting out the changes made to the FCA Handbook under the following instruments that were made by the FCA board in September and October:

  • Payment Services Instrument 2017. This instrument makes changes to the FCA Handbook in the light of the UK implementation of the revised Payment Services Directive on 13 January 2018. Part of the instrument comes into force on 13 January 2018 and the remainder on 1 April 2018.
  • Financial Services Compensation Scheme (Funding and Scope) Instrument 2017 (FCA 2017/58). This instrument makes changes relating to the extension of the coverage of the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) for some aspects of fund management. It also introduces FSCS for certain debt management activities and structured deposit intermediation.

FCA, 20 October 2017

 

FCA announces thematic review of the debt management sector

The FCA has announced it is undertaking a thematic review of the debt management sector in line with its 2017/18 Business Plan.  The review will be based on a sample of both fee-charging and free-to-customer debt management providers and is expected to complete in the first quarter of 2019.

FCA, 19 October 2017

FCA reports on implementation of insurance renewal transparency rules

The FCA has published information in relation to how general insurance firms have implemented transparency in insurance renewals which came into effect in April 2017. The main areas where firms have failed to meet the rules fall into four categories:

  • Providing incorrect premium information
  • Failing to present the premiums and shopping around message clearly, accurately and in a way which draws the reader’s attention
  • Not implementing the rule changes for all products and customers
  • Failing to properly identify a ‘renewal’ as defined by our rules

FCA, 18 October 2017

 

TheCityUK publishes summary paper on Brexit transitional arrangements

TheCityUK, representative body for the UK financial and related professional services industry, has published a summary paper on Brexit transitional arrangements. In the paper, TheCityUK calls on the UK government to set out in greater detail its objectives for transitional arrangements and for the EU to respond quickly and positively. It already warns that, in the current absence of clarity on transitional arrangements, firms are already beginning to implement contingency plans for Brexit.

TheCityUK, 17 October 2017

FSB stocktake of cyber-security regulations, guidance and supervisory practices

The Financial Stability Board (FSB) has published a report with the results of its stocktake of publicly released cyber-security regulations, guidance and supervisory practices in the financial services sector. The FSB has also published a summary of the report. The FSB conclusions include that FSB member jurisdictions and international bodies have been active in addressing cybersecurity for the financial sector, the schemes of regulation and guidance addressing cybersecurity have varied widely across jurisdictions, and, while there are a number of similarities across intentional guidance, there are considerable differences in the scope of entities covered.

FSB, 13 October 2017

 

DCLG calls for evidence on potential improvements to the process of buying and selling a home

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has published a call for evidence regarding methods of improving the process of buying and selling a home. It aims to make the process more affordable, quicker and less stressful for consumers. The main areas on which it requests evidence include disclosure of referral fees, the impact of digital conveyancing, the process of making decisions when choosing a conveyancer, and how to speed up the mortgage application process.

Gov.uk, 22 October 2017

 

HM Treasury calls for evidence relating to the burden of "problem debt" on individuals

HM Treasury has published a call for evidence relating to relieving the burden of "problem debt" for individuals. "Problem debt" occurs where debt and arrears consume a substantial proportion of income. HM Treasury is considering developing protection for individuals through enforcing a six week period free from interest, charges and enforcement action, in order to give an opportunity for individuals to seek financial advice on how to manage debt and relieve the burden. Views can be given until 16 January 2018.

Gov.uk, 24 October 2017

 

EU New versions of EPC SEPA rulebooks: October 2017

The EPC has published a press release announcing the publication of its updated rulebook versions for all of its Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) payment schemes. The EPC also explains that the changes have no operational impact, but do make small amendments to each rulebook to reflect regulatory changes arising from the guide for the assessment of the SEPA payment schemes against Eurosystem oversight standards.

EPC, 18 October 2017