The UK Financial Services Bill (2012-13) received Royal Assent on 19 December 2012 to become the Financial Services Act 2012, an extremely important piece of legislation which creates an entirely new framework for financial services regulation in the UK (again!).  Led once again by the Bank of England under a new 'macro-prudential' Financial Policy Committee, the new regime will replace the existing Financial Services Authority (FSA) with two new bodies, a Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA, with micro-prudential responsibility) and a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA, responsible for conduct of business regulation), from early 2013.  The Act takes effect on 1 April 2013 and provides for many of its parts to take effect on a phased-in approach in accordance with a series of Commencement Orders, that are expected to start being released now that the Bill has become an Act.  Some key points we are monitoring in relation to this new legislation include: the replacement of the existing section 397 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 with a new set of criminal offences for misleading statements and practices including those relating to benchmark manipulation; the oversight and operation of the UK Listing Authority under the new FCA; how the FCA will use its powers to set additional capital requirements; and more generally, the composition of the FSA Handbook under the new regime, in particular whether and how the 'BIPRU' (Chapter 9 - Securitisation) rules will be 'copied-out' or otherwise be re-stated or re-issued in a new prudential rulebook.

Useful links:

Financial Services Act 2012