Accountability
Regime
extension

The rules will be extended in 2018 to the remaining solo regulated firms and the FCA has published a consultation paper in support of this.

Conduct and culture

The aim of the new regime is to reduce harm to consumers and strengthen market integrity by making individuals more accountable for their conduct and competence.

As part of this, the Accountability Regime aims to encourage a culture of staff at all levels taking personal responsibility for their actions and make sure firms and staff clearly understand and can demonstrate where responsibility lies.

Proportionate regime

The FCA is committed to ensuring that the regime is proportionate according to the size of the firm, and therefore proposes applying a baseline of specific requirements to all regulated firms, called the core regime. Under the enhanced regime the FCA proposes some extra requirements for the largest and most complex firms.

Insurers currently apply a revised version of the FCA’s Approved Persons Regime and the Prudential Regulation Authority’s Senior Insurance Managers Regime. The FCA proposes to build on this framework and introduce all elements of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime to insurers.

Key elements

Five Conduct Rules will apply to all financial services staff at FCA authorised firms. This simple set of rules means that individuals must act with integrity, act with due care, skill and diligence, be open and cooperative with regulators, pay due regard to customer interests and treat them fairly, and observe proper standards of market conduct.

The responsibilities of Senior Managers will be clearly set out and, should something in their area of responsibility go wrong, they can be personally held to account. The Senior Managers will be approved by the FCA and appear on the FCA Register.

Under the Certification Regime, firms will certify individuals for their fitness, skill and propriety at least once a year, if they are not covered by the Senior Managers Regime but their jobs significantly impact customers or firms.

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