FCA mulls Gabriel issues and investment risks

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The FCA board accepted research detailing risks related to retail investments at its April board meeting as well as discussing issues with the Gabriel system.

Minutes from the FCA’s meeting, published on 8 June, detail a “house view” the regulator received on retail investment.

FCA retail investments department head Clive Gordon and markets intel and data analysis director Jo Hill attended the meeting to discuss the research.

According to the FCA 2014/15 annual report, in a house view the regulator brings together information from firms, consumers and market research to form an over-arching view on the markets and sectors it regulates.

The retail investment house view is the fourth of eight to be presented to the board. The views are also considered by the executive committee to determine any impact on the FCA’s business plan.

The retail investment report looked at the implications of platforms and robo-advice, issues around agency, and the impact of changes in the tax treatment of retail savings and pensions.

The minutes said: “The board accepted the risks to the FCA’s objectives presented in the document and considered that the prioritisation of the risks and interventions was appropriate. Further work would be undertaken to explore the issues highlighted.”

In her report to the board, FCA acting chief executive Tracey McDermott raised, among other points, issues affecting the Gabriel system, and the work the FCA is doing in relation to Mossack Fonseca and the Panama papers.

The minutes did not detail what the issues with the Gabriel system, the FCA’s online reporting system, were and the regulator declined to comment.

In January 2015 a technical glitch meant firms were unable to submit forms through Gabriel for several days.

The FCA’s contract with Amazon Web Services for cloud computing was also raised including several new initiatives that, jointly, would cost more than £5m.

In addition, the board discussed this month’s EU referendum.