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Financial Services - Regulatory & Risk

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No need to plead and no need for CMCs

27 February 2014

Those celebrating the common sense decision of the Court of Appeal in Clark v In Focus will have an additional reason to smile when they read comments in the leading judgment of Lady Justice Arden on the purpose of FOS and the role of CMCs.

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Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs) go live today

24 February 2014

The Director of the Serious Fraud Office, David Green, regards DPA s as "a welcome addition to the prosecutor's tool kit" but nevertheless has confirmed that "Prosecution remains the preferred option for corporate criminality".

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Battle lines drawn as High Court supports FCA collective investment scheme finding

21 February 2014

Further judicial guidance has been provided on unauthorised collective investment schemes ("CISs").

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FOS in focus

14 February 2014

The Court of Appeal confirmed this morning that a FOS complainant with an award at the statutory maximum of £150k cannot sue for the balance of their losses in Court.

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Competition and Markets Authority announces its 'Vision, values and strategy'

12 February 2014

The Competition and Markets Authority ("CMA") is the new combined successor body to the Office of Fair Trading and the Competition Commission, created by the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013.

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Offshore Ombudsman: Financial Ombudsman Service for Jersey and Guernsey on its way

12 February 2014

With the first glimmers of spring breaking through the clouds, the Ombudsman, like many of us, is packing his bowler and planning a trip off-shore.

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Standard Bank, a non-standard fine and sub-standard AML systems

06 February 2014

The £7.6m fine recently meted out to Standard Bank was accompanied by a self-congratulatory press release by the regulator heralding new firsts.

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Moving with the times – welcome to RPC's Financial Services Blog

04 February 2014

Regulatory change and client demand have prompted us to create a separate Corporate Insurance 'Hub' and re-brand our Regulatory Blog.

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Regulator gets its Tiger in HK

Published on 08 January 2014. By David Smyth, Senior Partner, Hong Kong

Overseas hedge fund admits to insider dealing of listed shares in Hong Kong

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Complaints-led regulation of general insurance – FOS' increasing role

23 December 2013

The nature of annual insurance policies makes the GI market ripe for complaints-led regulation.

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Which? Why? More importantly, who else?

20 December 2013

Which? and other similar consumer bodies have been granted 'super-complainant' status. How will they use it and, of greater concern, who else might be so empowered?

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FCA fines Lloyds TSB for financial incentives failings

12 December 2013

Governance failings and conflicts mis-management can take many forms.

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'Stranded on an island without a canoe'

23 October 2013

Common sense may yet prevail at the Court of Appeal in the Clark v In Focus case about whether a complainant can take the maximum award from FOS and sue for the balance of their losses in Court.

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Update on Clark v In Focus appeal

22 October 2013

The landmark appeal in Clark v In Focus is today being heard by the Court of Appeal, who will decide whether a complainant can accept an award at FOS and then sue for the balance through the courts.

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Ofcom, Ofgem, Ofwat, OfFCA…? FCA set to become latest competition sectoral regulator

21 October 2013

At its own request, the FCA is set to be granted expanded competition powers under new legislation.

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No more moral high ground for whistle blowers?

15 October 2013

Yet another US style importation is on the cards.

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Handbook suffers from CIDRA hangover

10 October 2013

Whilst FOS rightly considered itself ahead of the consumer insurance law reforms, the FCA has now caught up.

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National Crime Agency – same old, same old?

09 October 2013

If you, like me, tried to access SOCA's website (www.soca.gov.uk) to undertake a compare and contrast exercise with the website of the NCA, you would have found yourself directed seamlessly to www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk.

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Blog

CAT condemns the Competition Commission's Data Room Rules as unfair and in breach of principles of natural justice

08 October 2013

On 2 October 2013, the CAT handed down its ruling on an application by BMI Healthcare, HCA International and Spire Healthcare (the 'Applicants') for a review of the CC's decision relating to the operation of a data room in its private healthcare market investigation.

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Insurers beware: the FOS is stretching its powers to – and beyond – the limit

02 October 2013

The FOS has publicly stated that when dealing with complaints about the validity of insurance policies...

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Lawyers – the ideal guardians of ill-gotten gains

10 September 2013

A report produced by the Financial Action Task Force ("FATF") – the intergovernmental body recognised as the standard bearer when it comes to anti-money laundering ("AML") and counter-terrorist financing ("CTF") -

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FCA remains committed to the reduction of financial crime

26 July 2013

In the first anti-money laundering annual report published by the FCA yesterday, the FCA has concluded that the level of anti-money laundering compliance in financial services firms is a "serious concern".

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Government signals the dawning of a new regulatory era – whilst providing a damning indictment of the current regime

24 July 2013

The Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards has proposed to bring about significant change in the banking sector.

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The FCA – a "very different animal", that bites harder

23 July 2013

Two notable recent fines, £2.8m levied against Policy Administration Services for poor complaints handling in relation to mobile phone insurance and £7.38m levied against Swinton for aggressive selling of add-on insurance, have a key common feature.

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FCA confirms market study into general insurance 'add-ons'

19 July 2013

The nascent Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) confirmed on 9 July 2013 that it will undertake its first market study since becoming responsible for the promotion of competition in the financial services industry1.

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Blog

Register of beneficial company ownership

Published on 18 July 2013. By Anthony Shatz, Partner

The "Transparency and Trust" discussion paper published by the Business Secretary Vince Cable earlier this week outlines various proposed measures to help improve corporate transparency.

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Blog

Hong Kong regulator takes second shot at Asian Tiger

Published on 18 July 2013. By David Smyth, Senior Partner, Hong Kong

Hong Kong's principal regulator (the Securities and Futures Commission) has confirmed that it has launched proceedings before the Market Misconduct Tribunal (MMT) against Tiger Asia Management LLC and three of its principal officers.

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Blog

FOS publishes first decisions naming insurers

12 July 2013

The FOS has today published 110 of its insurance (non PPI) decisions on its website.

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Another speech, another thematic review – this time into conflicts management

04 July 2013

The insurance sector has been informed through another speech by the FCA of plans for a potentially very important thematic review.

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General insurance conduct supervision takes shape

02 July 2013

Thematic reviews are not new but, since April, the production of thematic review reports by the FCA is.

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Regulatory rope? FCA guidance on 'super-complaints' offers firms chance to condemn themselves to a public hanging

27 June 2013

FCA Guidance published on Wednesday invites firms to make 'comprehensive and robust' reports about their own 'regular' failures where they give rise to consumer detriment and to require the FCA to publish its planned response, with a copy of the firm's original report.

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Blog

What does crime have to do with it…?

21 June 2013

Two important recent developments touch upon a crucial issue: to what extent should misconduct or misbehaviour in the City sound in the criminal law?

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FCA winning its battle to name and shame

20 June 2013

Last week the Court of Appeal handed the FCA a significant fillip in what has become a notable goal of the regulator – to see that those subject to its disciplinary proceedings are exposed to public scrutiny.

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Tempered approach by Singaporean regulator into LIBOR equivalent reveals inconsistencies in approach to global rate rigging scandal

19 June 2013

On Friday 14 June, the Monetary Authority of Singapore ("MAS") announced that it had completed its year-long review into the Singaporean equivalent of LIBOR – the Singapore Interbank Offered Rate ("SIBOR").

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Punched drunk by ICOBS and CIDRA? FCA proposes sobering detox

17 June 2013

There has been surprisingly little fuss about the new Consumer Insurance (Disclosure and Representations) Act 2012 (CIDRA) that came into force 6 April.

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Competition and cartel law reform edges closer

05 June 2013

After more than two years of Government consultation, the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013 was finally published in May, having received Royal Assent in April. Full implementation is anticipated within a year.

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Blog editor promoted to Partnership

24 May 2013

I am pleased to announce that Robbie Constance has been promoted to Partner, adding further depth and breadth to our Regulatory Group.

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Regulator's pursuit of market misconduct in Hong Kong – Top court delivers written judgment

Published on 23 May 2013. By David Smyth, Senior Partner, Hong Kong

As noted in my blog of 30 April, the Court of Final Appeal in Hong Kong ("the CFA") abruptly dismissed the appeal in Tiger Asia Management LLC & Ors v Securities and Futures Commission ("the SFC"), FACV Nos. 10, 11, 12 and 13 of 2012.

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FCA launches thematic probe into 'transition management' in asset management sector

Published on 09 May 2013. By James Wickes, Partner

It has been reported in the FT overnight that the FCA is swooping on the London offices of the world’s biggest banks and asset managers in a new probe aimed at a widespread (and lucrative) business known as "transition management".

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Clark v In Focus appeal – watch this space

18 April 2013

In Focus has now been granted permission to appeal against the decision of the High Court in Clark v In Focus.

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Dawn raids: regulatory inspections of your IT equipment and storage media

08 April 2013

The European Commission has recently affirmed its current practices for searching IT equipment and storage media during a 'dawn raid' inspection of business premises where it suspects a breach of EU competition law.

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LeO maximum monetary award increases – but at least it's final

01 February 2013

The Legal Ombudsman – or LeO to its new friends – has today been granted the power to award £50k (up from £30k).

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FSA market study into insurance add-ons 'shines a light' on competition

15 January 2013

The FSA has recently announced details of a market study into general insurance add-on products in a bid to 'shine a light' on how competition operates within the 'relevant markets' for such products.

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FOS: Pit stop on the road to court?

10 January 2013

As I reported in December, following the case of Clark v In Focus Asset Management and Tax Solutions, a complainant may now accept a maximum monetary award from FOS and then bring a civil claim through the courts to sue for the balance of their loss.

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Suing for the balance – High Court tips the scales the other way

20 December 2012

In a shocking about-turn, the High Court yesterday handed down judgment holding that a FOS complainant may accept a maximum monetary award and then bring a civil claim in court to claim for the balance.

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RDR – from commission bias to service bias?

10 December 2012

This morning’s research from Which?, that reveals continuing pressure within the big banks to sell, lays bare one of the fundamental shortcomings of RDR:

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FOS six-month time limit upheld by High Court

10 December 2012

The High Court confirmed on Wednesday that a decision of the FOS that a complaint against a bank was outside the six-month time limit for bringing a complaint could not be impugned as irrational or unlawful.

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Watch the Regulatory panel session at the Xchanging Conference

10 December 2012

The Xchanging London Market Conference 2012, one of the London insurance market’s biggest annual events, will be taking place all day on Tuesday 6 November.

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The FSA’s ‘Journey to the FCA’ embeds competition in the FCA’s regulatory approach

10 December 2012

Following the June 2011 FSA publication “The Financial Conduct Authority: Approach to Regulation“, which placed the promotion of effective competition at the centre of the new FCA’s remit (discussed here), the FSA has now published ‘Journey to the FCA‘, which provides further detail on what that will mean in practice.

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Cosy chats out, prosecutions in

10 December 2012

We always suspected that the arrival of David Green at the SFO in April would herald a new era at the beleaguered agency.

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