Shayne Halfpenny-Ray provides a regulatory update from across the insurance profession
It has been a busy time in the regulatory space in recent months. Here are some of the most significant developments, as well as deadlines to come.
Government Disability Strategy
The UK government has now launched its National Disability Strategy, announcing new measures and sectoral disability ambassadors.
It is worth mentioning the fantastic work the previous ambassador, Johnny Timpson, was able to drive through the Access to Insurance Working Group he set up in 2018. Not only does Access to Insurance feature in the new disability strategy, but also the work of Mr Timpson has been used as a case study for the new ambassadors to learn from.
This shows just how effective insurance leadership can be in this space and we look forward to working with the new ambassador, Peter Hamilton of Zurich.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has launched a consultation on proposals to improve transparency for investors on the diversity of listed company boards and executive management teams.
The proposals suggest changes to the listing rules which require listed companies to annually publish:
- A ‘comply or explain statement’ on whether they have achieved certain proposed targets for gender and ethnic minority representation on their boards; and
- Data on the make-up of their board and most senior level of executive management in terms of gender and ethnicity.
The consultation closes on 22 October 2021.
FCA Business plan latest
Outlining their new business plan, the CEO of the FCA, Nikhil Rathi, discussed how the regulator would become more assertive, innovative and adaptive.
The seven key strategic aims set out will be met by:
- reducing the FSCS levy in a multiyear timeframe as well as the value and volume of FSCS claims.
- measuring the amount of refusal, withdrawal, and rejection rates at the gateway.
- measuring the number of complaints about newly authorised firms.
- increasing the number of firms whose permissions we remove either permanently or temporarily.
- reducing the number and proportion of calls to the FCA that are redirected.
- increasing effectiveness of its ScamSmart campaigns.
- marketing cleanliness measures.
The regulator acknowledges its expanded remit and the need to become more proactive to meet the challenges and risks within the market.
The FCA’s consultation on the consumer duty closed on 31 July, in which they sought views on proposals setting clearer and higher expectations for firms’ standards of care towards consumers.
It would require firms to:
- ask themselves what outcomes consumers should be able to expect from their products and services.
- act to enable rather than hinder these outcomes.
- assess the effectiveness of their actions.
Read my full article on the consumer duty here from this edition of The Journal for a sense of the key challenges and opportunities of the duty.
As always, we will keep you informed of all updates on the above, as well as any other regulatory and legislative changes coming your way.
Shayne Halfpenny-Ray is public affairs manager of the CII