It is great news that the percentages of fines have decreased over time and in the post 2008 financial crisis era. However, it doesn't remove the point that there remains a rise in the number of ongoing investigations and enforcement actions that are being issued within the UK Financial Services sector.
The FCA are concerned that an increasing number of unregulated financial firms are coming out the woodwork, leading to consumers finding themselves in dangerous financial positions. Many of the problems that have arisen have been caused by regulated firms undertaking activities which are outside the ‘regulatory perimeter', pushing the boundaries against their authorised activities to find new innovative ways to service their customers.
It is apparent that since the 2008 financial crisis, an increasing number of businesses are operating unlicensed and are carrying out regulated activities that they are not permitted to do. This increases the pressure on the FCA to identify those businesses to ensure that customers are protected from unnecessary detriment that may be caused.
Consumers are advised to do their research and to check credentials, before deciding which service providers to use. If consumers do wish to remain with their services providers who are undoubtedly unregulated, the FCA advise to approach with extreme caution.
The FCA is undeniably wanting to maintain the consumers confidence when dealing with Financial Service institutions and that they are inevitably protected when doing so.
FCA fines on City fall to lowest level since financial crisis