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FCA releases updated guidance on EU departure preparations

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The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is urging financial services firms to ensure they are making any necessary changes to protect customers from negative impacts of leaving the EU, whatever the outcome of negotiations, including a no-deal Brexit.  

Firms are also being reminded to consider what information needs to be communicated to their customers, and how this will be done in a way that is clear, fair and not misleading.
As well as publishing updated general information for all firms, the FCA has releases specific guidance for wholesale banks, markets and asset managers. UK firms doing business in the EEA will need to consider if and on what basis it may be possible to continue after Brexit. As firms prepare for EU withdrawal, the FCA is stressing it is important that execution is managed appropriately. If a firm decides to expand its presence elsewhere in Europe, it is crucial the new structure enables the FCA to supervise the UK business, and that it continues to meet threshold conditions.
For all UK-based firms, particularly those operating within the European Economic Area (EEA), the FCA highlights changes to UK legislation, data sharing and passporting as some of the main issues that may have to be dealt with. To help identify the extent to which Brexit may impact their business, and which areas to focus on, firms can visit this list of questions on the FCA website.
Nausicaa Delfas, Executive Director of International at the FCA, says: “It is important that firms are finalising their preparations to deal with leaving the EU. While we appreciate there remains uncertainty, firms should consider the impact of all scenarios on their business, and on their customers. As a guiding principle, we expect firms to adhere to our regulatory standards throughout. To assist firms, we have updated the information on our website.”
“The FCA continues to prepare for all scenarios – our focus is to ensure there is as smooth a transition as possible when the UK leaves the EU, and that markets function well.”

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