FCA finalises plans to improve functioning of equity secondary markets

The FCA has today published its policy statement and final rules (PS23/4) on improvements to equity secondary markets.  This forms part of the Wholesale Markets Review (WMR) conducted by the FCA and HM Treasury (HMT) and follows a consultation in July 2022 (see our blog post here). The changes also support the objectives set out in the FCA’s Strategy 2022‑2025 and its recent business plans which include a commitment to strengthen the UK’s position in wholesale markets. Read more

UK Government publishes an update on the UK Green Taxonomy and a consultation on bringing ESG ratings providers within the regulated perimeter

On 30 March 2023, the UK Government published (i) its updated Green Finance Strategy (Strategy) and (ii) a consultation on the future regulatory regime for Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) ratings providers (Consultation). Both publications are part of a wider set of ESG-related publications such as the Powering Up Britain – Net Zero Growth Plan … Read more

HM Treasury publishes draft statutory order regulating UK crypto marketing

Overview This week, the government published the draft Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Financial Promotion) (Amendment) Order 2023 (Order) along with an explanatory memorandum. This is the latest in a raft of measures enhancing the UK’s oversight of cryptoasset activities, raising consumer protection standards while providing greater certainty for business. The Order follows the … Read more

Grand Designs – Next phase in the Digital Pound build

This article was first published in The Banker on 3 March 2023. Final decision yet to be made The world of money is changing. The received wisdom of “cash is king” has long been declining and the world is gradually moving to a more digitised banking space where digital deposits and payments have become dominant; … Read more

Hong Kong SFC paves the way for retail access to crypto platforms … provided safeguards are in place

A major virtual asset (VA) regulatory milestone occurred last week when the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) published its much anticipated Consultation Paper on the proposed Regulatory Requirements for Virtual Asset Trading Platform Operators Licensed by the Securities and Futures Commission (Consultation Paper). Among other things, the SFC proposes to allow all types of investors, including retail, to access VA trading platforms (VATP) provided the VATP comply with a range of robust investor protection measures. Read more