Today the British Financial Services Authority has published a discussion paper looking at how transparency and more effective disclosure could improve the accountability of the regulator and the financial services industry, and help consumers make more informed decisions.
The FSA distinguishes between three areas:
a) Measures to increase the transparency of the work that the FCA will undertake:
- Giving more detail to whistle-blowers about the action that has been taken after they have contacted the FCA.
- Publishing aggregated information about supervisory activity, which could include the number of planned and unplanned supervisory visits that have taken place across different sectors.
b) Information the FCA could release about firms, individuals and markets in more general:
- Disclosing more details about redress schemes.
- Publishing the amount of redress paid by firms.
c) The FCA could require firms to publish information:
- Publishing claims data on insurance products to help consumers understand the value of particular insurance products.
- Providing more context around published complaints data to improve understanding of what the data shows.
Martin Wheatley, CEO designate of the FCA, said: “Transparency cannot be an end in itself. We want to make sure that disclosure helps consumers make the right decisions when purchasing products and helps the market function more efficiently. We are open to hearing from all interested parties about their views on this paper.”