FCA

FCA Views of the Financial Landscape

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) have published a document entitled “Sector Views” giving their annual analysis of the UK financial landscape and how the financial system is working – see https://tinyurl.com/yc492lkt. For retail investors there is a chapter on “Retail Investments” which is particularly worth reading. But we also learn that the “FCA continues to plan for a range of scenarios regarding Brexit” which is good to hear. I somehow doubt it will be settled tomorrow (15th January) in Parliament – I ...

Response to Illiquid Assets Consultation cp18-27

Today, 17 December 2018, ShareSoc and  the UK Shareholders Association  submitted to the FCA a joint response on behalf of individual investors to this consultation. The key points we made were: UKSA and ShareSoc represent the 5 million people who own shares and have investment accounts with platforms in the UK. We represent the individual investors who own 12% of the UK stock market: they own 30%, if you include their investments via funds, pensions, etc. Our view is that better labelling of these ...

Blancco AGM and Regulatory Landscape

Today I attended the Annual General Meeting of Blancco Technology Group (BLTG). This technology company is now focused on the data erasure market which is surely a growing one. I have commented on this company before (see links below), particularly as the company, and its shareholders, seemed to be a victim of false accounting – an issue that is way too prevalent of late. The legal framework under which companies, their directors and the regulatory bodies operate just seems to be too ...

New FCA consultation on CFDs – Request for help

by Cliff Weight, Director, ShareSoc The FCA have launched a new consultation on CFDs and “retail derivatives”: https://www.fca.org.uk/publications/consultation-papers/cp18-38-restricting-contract-difference-products-sold-retail-clients-and-discussion-other-retail  We are circulating this to members to see if anyone has specific experience and competence to be able to respond – and is willing to help. The FCA have asked 17 specific questions. Our approach to consultations is to only answer those questions where we have particular knowledge.  We usually write a covering letter highlighting our views about the key issues and then give the answers ...

Banks Claims Group Limited, FCA and RBS

Neil Mitchell, who ran Torex Retail before he blew the whistle on an earlier fraud at the software company and RBS’s Global Restructuring Group took control of the business, has applied for a judicial review of a UK Financial Conduct Authority decision in July that its options for taking action were “limited”. Neil, who claims to represent 530 complainants affected by alleged wrongdoing at GRG, alleges in his judicial review application that the FCA has been “unlawfully refusing or failing” to ...

FRC and FCA Investigations: Managing expectations, and Blancco news

Peter Parry and I now have regular meetings with the FRC and FCA to discuss topics of interest. We met Jen Sisson of the FRC on 23 Sep and...

Too Much Cash, Wey Education and Patisserie Accounts

Are you stacked up with cash in your ISAs, SIPPs, and direct portfolios? As a dedicated follower of fashion (if the markets are falling as investors sell, then so do I) it is of some concern that the cash is not earning any interest. There was some relatively good news yesterday from soon to be listed A.J.Bell Youinvest. They are increasing the interest they pay on cash held in portfolios. Previously you got 0.05% on balances more than £50,000. It will ...

Brexit Prevarication, The Company, Sarbanes-Oxley and Patisserie Holdings (CAKE)

Prevarication definitions: delaying giving someone an answer, or avoiding telling the whole truth. Theresa May’s suggestion for an extension of the Brexit transition period surely smacks of prevarication and all sides of the Brexit debate saw it for what it was. The result is some furious back-peddling by the Prime Minister. Putting off decisions usually does not make them any easier. It is not at all clear what the PM’s strategy is here. Was she perhaps hoping to put off Brexit ...

FCA investigations of hidden fees.

34 fund managers are being investigated for ‘hiding’ their fees according to a story in the Sunday Times on 7 October, see https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/34-fund-managers-investigated-for-hiding-their-fees-l6kjwqhrz  An investigation has been launched into 34 pension and investment companies for failing to meet new rules that force them to disclose the true cost of their funds. This is the first time the City regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), has taken action against firms for not adopting rules intended to make it easier for savers to assess and ...

Response to FCA on Platforms Study Sep 2018

Press Release 106 - Joint Press Release from UKSA and ShareSoc on behalf of individual investors about the FCA Investment Platforms Market Study Interim Report In a hard-hitting response to the Financial Conduct Authority, UKSA-ShareSoc demand a more fundamental review of how investment ownership is recorded (i.e. share and fund registration systems) needs to be undertaken and legislation put in place to reform it. The present systems appear to have been devised for the primary benefit of the platform operators and not their clients, ...