The Chartered Body Alliance, which aims to raise professionalism and trust across financial services, is undertaking a number of activities throughout the year to cover areas including diversity and ethics – among them a recent seminar on the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SMCR).
With the SMCR to be extended to insurers in December, the Alliance brought together an expert panel to discuss the matter and enable not only the sharing of experiences and best practice but also the highlighting of concerns and possible improvements. In attendance were those already operating under the regime, as well as those about to get onboard later this year.
The seminar featured the likes of David Blunt, Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) head of conduct specialists; Personal Investment Management & Financial Advice Association director of regulation Ian Cornwall; solicitor Jeremy Fraser, former council member of the Chartered Banker Institute; and Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) development director Steve Jenkins.
The Alliance is a joint initiative by the CII, the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment, and the Chartered Banker Institute. It promotes high standards of knowledge, skill, integrity, and behaviour across the financial sector.
The timely session took place under the Chatham House rule, and comes as the FCA works towards the extension of the regime. It was previously announced that the watchdog was consulting on how SMCR will apply when it is extended to include smaller firms regulated only by the FCA.
First introduced for banks and building societies in 2016, the regime also currently applies to credit unions, investment firms, as well as UK branches of foreign banks. It will include insurance firms starting December 10, as part of legislation to extend SMCR across all financial services firms.
“Britain’s first-class regulation is one of many reasons our country is so attractive for financial services investment,” said John Glen, the Economic Secretary to the Treasury and City Minister, in January. “The Senior Managers and Certification Regime plays a big part in this, ensuring that those at the top display the behaviours and values that the British people expect.
“The extension of the regime to insurance firms will ensure individual accountability for misconduct at the most senior levels within the insurance sector.”