Listing rules: FCA policy statement on sponsor competence and consultations on joint sponsors and sponsor conflicts
On 26 September 2014, the FCA published CP14/21, which incorporates its policy statement on CP14/02 on sponsor competence and other changes to the Listing and Prospectus Rules. CP14/21 also includes a consultation on joint sponsors and a call for views on sponsor conflicts.
Following feedback, the FCA's approach to issues consulted on in CP14/02 includes the following:
- The FCA will retain the obligation on sponsors to submit at least one sponsor declaration every three years.
- The five competency sets proposed in LR 8.6.7R remain, but the FCA has now removed the concept of a competence framework from the Listing Rules and its proposed Technical Note. Instead, LR 8.6.12R(9) now requires a sponsor to have effective systems and controls for compliance with each of the requirements in LR 8.6.7R(2)(b) and the Technical Note includes a more full description of the five competency sets.
- The FCA will proceed with its proposal to convert LR 8.6.12G from guidance into a rule.
- The concept of appointing a key contact for each transaction remains, although the requirement that such person must be proficient in the procedural requirements and processes of the FCA has been deleted.
- Applicants will be able to limit their approval to providing sponsor services to premium listed investment companies only.
- The revised definition of a Class 1 Circular will proceed as set out in CP14/02.
- Proposed amendments to the Prospectus Rules will remain, with amendments to relax the obligation on an applicant to ensure that it submits a compliant and factually accurate prospectus.
CP14/21 also seeks views on proposals to refine the joint sponsor regime, after all respondents expressed support for retaining that regime. That consultation includes a proposed new Technical Note on communications between joint sponsors and the FCA, in line with the FCA's new proposal that all joint sponsors may participate in all non-administrative discussions with the FCA. The consultation also calls for views on issues raised in discussions with stakeholders on sponsor conflicts.
Amendments to the Listing Rules will come into force on 1 February 2015, save for changes to LR 5 and LR 13, which apply from 1 October 2014 (alongside the changes to the Prospectus Rules). Comments on the revised Technical Notes on sponsor competence are invited by 7 November 2014 and are expected to form part of the UKLA Knowledge Base from 1 February 2015.
The consultation on joint sponsors and the call for views on sponsor conflicts both close on 30 December 2015.
From January 2015, Payday loan rates should be capped at 0.8% a day of the amount borrowed, said the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). And in total, no one will have to pay back more than twice what they borrowed. There will also be a cap on default charges, which is likely to be set at £15. The FCA estimates that payday lenders will lose £420m a year as a result of the changes, or 42% of their revenue. But it says consumers will save an average of £193 each a year.
The measures announced include:
• Initial cap of 0.8% a day in interest charges. Someone who takes out a loan of £100 over 30 days, and pays back on time, will therefore pay no more than £24 in interest
• Default fees capped at £15. Borrowers who fail to pay back on time can be charged a maximum of £15, plus 0.8% a day in outstanding interest
• Total cost cap of 100%. Even if a borrower defaults, he or she will never have to pay back more than twice the amount they borrowed.
FCA ASSIST will update this page with more precise information once the FCA has published them.