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FSA publishes consultation paper on remuneration

The Financial Services Authority has published a consultation paper which consults on whether to incorporate its Code of practice on remuneration into the handbook and its application to large banks and broker dealers.

The Code has a general requirement that ‘a firm must establish, implement and maintain remuneration policies, procedures and practices that are consistent with and promote effective risk management’, which would become a handbook rule.

The paper will also propose that the Code’s remaining 10 principles are put into the handbook to help guide firms on the evidence the FSA will focus on when assessing compliance.

The Code’s rules and evidential provisions would apply to certain FSA authorised large banks and broker dealers.

They are defined as FSA authorised banks and building societies which are either or both consolidated regulatory capital in the UK banking entities in excess of £1bn or part of an international financial group whose regulatory capital is in excess of £20bn or the equivalent amount in another currency.

It will also apply to FSA authorised investment firms (BIPRU ‘730k’ firms) which are have consolidated regulatory capital in the UK authorised entity in excess of £750m or its equivalent amount in a foreign currency.

Or are part of an international financial group whose total shareholder equity is in excess of £5 billion or its equivalent amount in a foreign currency.

These criteria will extend the Code to about 45 of the largest banks, building societies and broker dealers operating in the UK.

The paper notes that in order to be effective, policies on remuneration should be implemented globally and in a consistent manner, and in deciding whether to implement our plans we will take into account whether we think there is satisfactory alignment of implementation plans by authorities in the major financial centres.

The paper is also inviting discussion on the idea that the Code should be applied to all other FSA-authorised firms.

The consulting period on implementation of the Code for larger banks and broker dealers will run for two months, until 18 May. The period for discussion and feedback on the idea of extending the Code to other firms regulated by the FSA will run until 18 June.

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