MPs demand leaner FCA with lower running costs

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The Treasury committee has demanded greater transparency on the FCA’s running costs, asking it to work towards becoming a smaller organisation.

In a letter sent to FCA chairman John Griffith-Jones this week, committee chair Andrew Tyrie accused the FCA of not doing enough to implement a previous recommendation of the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards, which said the conduct watchdog should become a “smaller, more focused” organisation that costs less to run than the equivalent part of the FSA.

Tyrie says: “The FCA reduced the cost of its existing activities for 2016/17. This process should have begun earlier. In 2015/16 the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards’ recommendation was set aside by the FCA. The FCA board’s explanation of its decision to increase the cost of delivering the FCA’s existing activities was insubstantial.”

He says the FCA’s accounts “lack clarity” and asks that costs resulting from changes in the FCA’s activities should be clearly delineated.

Tyrie adds: “Parliament, fee payers and the public need a higher level of transparency. I would be grateful for an explanation of the board decision to set aside the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards’ recommendation and for an assurance that the accounts will henceforth enable the costs of pre-existing and new activities be clearly delineated.”