Bridging the FinTech gap: What dividend should we seek from regulatory cooperation across jurisdictions?

Technology-facilitated innovation in financial services, a diverse collection of topics which coalesces under the portmanteau term of “FinTech”, is increasingly in the sights of policy-makers, whether at global, regional and national or state levels.  Keen observers will have noted a proliferation of consultation documents, statements, warnings, speeches and more emanating from national regulators.  Some of these recent publications address specific FinTech applications. Indeed, there has been a veritable deluge of material on Initial Coin Offerings over just the past few months.

Meanwhile bodies such as the Financial Stability Board (FSB), the influential Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS), and others, both within and without the traditional regulatory cohort, are making some efforts towards setting out (or attempt to setting out) some universal principles or truths which may address an increasingly gaping hole in the global regulatory policy canon.

We are at an early stage in the development of policy responses to FinTech, and it is perhaps unsurprising that globally agreed standards have yet to emerge. Continue reading

Scaling up the Senior Managers and Certification Regime: Thinking Ahead

The UK Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SMCR) is being extended to almost all financial services firms authorised by the FCA. This will include many firms in the payment services, peer-to-peer lending, crowdfunding and robo-asset management sectors. The plans are currently under consultation and we expect the regime to be implemented towards the end of 2018.

The SMCR was introduced in response to the 2008 banking crisis and the LIBOR rigging scandal to enhance individual accountability and create a culture of risk management and compliance. It has applied to banks, building societies and certain investment firms since March 2016, with a modified regime for insurers (known as SIMR). It is anticipated the extended regime will largely follow the current SMCR.

This post considers the extension of the SMCR and suggests some next steps for newly ‘in scope’ firms. Continue reading