FCA feeds back on OPBAS rulebook update

FCA has published the feedback it received on its consultation on updating the OPBAS Rulebook, and the revised rules, which took effect from 10 January 2023. FCA wanted to include a new chapter outlining OPBAS’ approach to supervision and expand existing guidance on what good supervision looks like.

FCA’s proposals were broadly welcomed but some professional bodies did not agree that they should have to assess the quality of SARs and challenged the suggestion that the “single point contact” should be at board level.

FCA has now published the new rules which implement most of its suggestions and, among other things:

  • introduce the suggested new chapter on the OPBAS approach to supervision, with a 4 point “scale of effectiveness” to help PBS understand what FCA expects;
  • retain its focus on encouraging PBS to be flexible about using their discretion in the best way to supervise;
  • replace references to “whistleblowing” with references to “disclosures”;
  • despite comments, keep the expectations on assessing SAR quality.

FCA will start to assess compliance from April.

Emma Radmore