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Enhancing consumer protection: FCA’s Consumer Duty survey findings

Consumer Duty survey findings
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Recently, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) released its Consumer Duty firm survey findings for Autumn 2023, shedding light on the progress made by firms in implementing the Consumer Duty.

Understanding the survey

In Spring 2023, the FCA commissioned Ipsos UK to conduct a comprehensive survey among firms falling under the scope of the Consumer Duty. This initial survey provided a baseline understanding of firms’ preparedness for the implementation deadline of 31st July 2023. Building upon this, a subsequent survey was conducted in Autumn 2023, targeting 634 firms not previously surveyed. The focus was on assessing how additional engagement had impacted firms’ readiness for compliance.

Key findings

The survey revealed significant improvements compared to the earlier assessment:

  • Increased completion rates: A notable proportion of surveyed firms reported completing the required steps, signifying progress in implementation. Specifically, 43% of firms surveyed reported they are not having difficulty with implementing any aspects of the Duty.
  • Sectoral progress: Sectors such as Retail Finance Providers and Debt Advice Firms, which lagged behind in the Spring survey, showed improvement, indicating the efficacy of targeted engagement efforts.
  • Enhanced compliance activities: Firms demonstrated increased engagement in key elements of the Duty, such as identifying target markets and appointing oversight personnel. Notably, 74% of firms reported conducting fair value assessments, reflecting a proactive approach to compliance.
  • Challenges in outcomes monitoring: Despite advancements, outcomes monitoring emerged as a challenging aspect, particularly for Payment Services Firms and Wealth Management firms, with only 41% and 36% respectively reporting ease in implementation.
  • Contractual and marketing improvements: A significant percentage of firms reported improvements in consumer contracts and marketing strategies, indicating a commitment to enhancing consumer protection measures. Specifically, 38% of firms have improved significant consumer contracts, while 30% have identified or made significant improvements to their marketing strategies.

Click here to download the Consumer Duty firm survey results

Implications and next steps

The reported improvements underscore a positive trajectory towards full Duty implementation by the July 2024 deadline. However, it’s crucial for firms to sustain momentum and ensure not only the execution but also the documentation of compliance activities to uphold consumer interests.

Moving forward, the FCA outlined a proactive approach, including thematic assessments, multi-firm interventions, and targeted interventions to address shortcomings in implementation and uphold consumer outcomes.

How Neopay can help

The FCA’s Consumer Duty survey findings highlight significant strides in compliance efforts across sectors, underscoring the collective commitment towards enhancing consumer protection. As we approach the full implementation deadline, continued collaboration between regulatory authorities, firms, and industry stakeholders will be instrumental in fostering a robust and consumer-centric financial ecosystem.

At Neopay, we recognise the importance of regulatory compliance and consumer protection. We offer services such as compliance audits, workshops, and training, helping firms adapt to the evolving regulatory landscape with confidence.

With Neopay, you can benefit from tailored solutions designed to meet your specific needs. We help you establish effective review processes, implement best practices, and ensure your firm delivers value to customers while remaining compliant. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can support your Consumer Duty requirements.

For everything you need to know about the Duty and the requirements for your business, check out our dedicated FCA Consumer Duty section for the latest updates.

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