Thursday, July 04, 2013

Enforcement at UK FCA will focus on attestation as part of personal accountability says Martin Wheatley

In enforcement actions, the new U.K Financial Conduct Authority will place enhanced significance on personal conduct in financial services in pursuing far more cases against executives and obtaining fines and criminal prosecutions. All this will mean an increased focus on personal accountability, said FCA Chief Executive Martin Wheatley. In remarks a recent FCA seminar, he noted that, in the spirit of personal accountability, there will be a much greater regulatory use of attestations, which the Chief Executive described as legal affirmations that focus the minds of senior executives by requiring them to sign on the dotted line and stake their professional reputation and authority on the quality of their firm’s compliance processes.

FCA enforcement practice will be conducted in a more confident, intelligent and sophisticated manner, pledged the agency head. The mechanisms and moral benchmarks the agency will work towards are almost completely divorced from those of ten or fifteen years ago.

Thus, where once teams worked in what the Executive Director called ``baronies’’, the FCA will now place a significant emphasis on the importance of the threads that run across and between divisions. For example, staff in the trading and markets departments are working on a daily basis with enforcement staff at every level of the organization.