FCA Business Plan 2020/21
08 April 2020
14 April 2020
Policy and Public Affairs
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) announce details of their annual Business Plan for the year ahead.
The new Business Plan arrives during the current COVID-19 pandemic, where the importance of reliable and fair financial products are more important than ever. The FCA confirm that:
“Our main priorities are to ensure that financial services businesses give people the support they need, that people don’t fall for scams, and that financial services businesses and markets know what we expect of them the support they need, that people don’t fall for scams, and that financial services businesses and markets know what we expect of them.”
The FCA acknowledge that they have taken the current crisis into consideration with their Business Plan and are looking at ways for customers to retain access to essential banking services and have flexibility on mortgage and other debt payments.
The plan outlines five key priority areas for the next 1-3 years:
- Transforming how we work and regulate
- Enabling effective consumer investment decisions
- Ensuring consumer credit markets work well
- Making payments safe and accessible
- Delivering fair value in a digital age
These five areas look at continuous improvement in how the regulator works by continuing to review processes and procedures. To do this the regulator will look at markets that function well, protecting vulnerable customers, minimising the impact of firm failures, tackling scams and the fair treatment of customers.
Work already in progress includes the findings of the consultation on vulnerable customers that is expected to be announced later this year, and the call for input on open finance. With incidents of fraud and scams also on the rise, the FCA are also looking at how to raise awareness so that customers are not exploited by the current situation, as well as ways of remaining vigilant to market abuse and poor conduct.
Speaking about the plan, Christopher Woolard, Interim Chief Executive of the FCA says:
“Obviously, the unprecedented events of the last few weeks and the response to the COVID-19 emergency will dominate the work that the FCA does for consumers, for markets and for firms. However, in addition to that, this is a plan setting out our objectives over the next three years and highlights some areas where we see enduring harm where we believe we need to act in the interests of consumers. We are also thinking closely about the role that data will play in the future and also how we need to transform ourselves to meet some of the challenges ahead.”
By transforming both the way financial products are managed, as well as their own internal working behaviours, the FCA are hoping that customers will feel more empowered and engaged with their own finances. The push for digital technology is more relevant than ever with many firms and organisations working remotely. The current crisis could prove a catalyst in highlighting the need to improve the way data is handled, as well maintaining fair pricing and treatment of customers
To read the 2020/21 Business Plan, CLICK HERE
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