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  • UK Financial Conduct Authority Consults on a New Directory For Financial Services Workers
    The Financial Conduct Authority has published a consultation paper setting out proposals to introduce a new directory of financial services workers.

    In the consultation paper, the FCA explains that one effect of the extension of the Senior Management and Certification Regimes to all financial services firms will be that the Financial Services Register will contain the details of fewer individuals. Currently the Financial Services Register contains details of individuals who have been approved by the FCA or PRA. This includes individuals in senior management roles, individuals approved to hold controlled functions and individuals who hold customer-facing roles. However, this will change following the extension of SM&CR to all firms, because Individuals in customer functions, for example, will need to be assessed as fit and proper by firms rather than being approved by the regulators. Only individuals in specified senior manager roles will be approved by the relevant regulators and entered on the Register.

    The FCA is proposing to introduce a new directory, on which information relating to "directory persons" will be publicly accessible. The FCA envisages that directory persons will comprise:
    • all staff holding a certification function under the SM&CR;
    • non-senior manager function directors (both executive and non-executive); and
    • other individuals who are sole traders or appointed representatives (including those within appointed representatives) where they are carrying on business with clients and require a qualification to do so.

    In the consultation paper the FCA outlines the key features of the proposed directory:
    • it would be centrally hosted by the FCA and freely accessible to the public, a single central location for information on Directory Persons and Senior Managers at all firms authorized under the Financial Services and Markets Act;
    • its search capabilities will allow users to seek out suitable individuals; and
    • firms would be responsible for keeping their information up to date, by reporting certain information on their directory persons to the FCA.

    The FCA has published a prototype version of the directory user interface as an example of how the directory could work. The prototype is available via a webpage link and in pdf format. The FCA invites potential users of the directory to explore the prototype and provide feedback on their user experience.

    The consultation paper also explains that certain improvements will be made to the financial services register to make it easier to use and understand.
    Comments on the consultation are invited by October 5, 2018. The FCA aims to publish final rules in winter 2018. Final system testing will follow the publication of final rules, before the directory is formally launched.

    View the FCA consultation (FCA CP 18/19).

    View the webpage link to the prototype directory.

    View the response form.

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