Recognised industry codes

Our process for recognising industry codes of conduct for unregulated financial markets and activities, and a list of the codes we’ve recognised.

To support and encourage the development and adoption of good quality industry codes of conduct, we’ve established a framework to formally recognise industry codes covering certain unregulated activities. This process is known as 'FCA recognition'.

We’re conscious that industry codes shouldn’t become prescriptive rules or have the same status as FCA rules in regulated markets. They're just one factor that we consider when we make judgments about the use of enforcement powers.

Firms and individuals subject to the SM&CR

If you’re a Senior Manager, Certified Individual, or an employee of an authorised firm subject to the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR), you must comply with the five individual conduct rules set out in COCON 2.1. This includes Rule 5: ‘you must observe proper standards of market conduct'. These rules apply to all the activities you carry out during your employment, whether or not they are regulated activities. 

In regulated markets, the Financial Services and Markets Act (FSMA), other relevant legislation (including EU retained law), and FCA rules and guidance outline proper standards of conduct. In unregulated markets, the Code of Market Conduct (MAR 1) or relevant market codes and exchange rules can be used to gauge whether an individual or firm’s conduct meets the requirements and standards of the market. 

Behaviour that’s in line with an FCA-recognised industry code will generally indicate that you’re meeting your obligation to observe ‘proper standards of market conduct’ in relation to unregulated activities.

Industry codes are not mandatory and are just one way of complying with the requirement to observe proper standards of market conduct. However, it may be possible to observe proper standards of market conduct in other ways. 

How we grant recognition

Our process for recognising industry codes ensures a consistent and efficient approach when dealing with requests for recognition.

 

Steps for requesting recognition

1

Code authors email us to seek recognition of the most recent version of their industry code.

2

We will ask for specific information about the code and how, in the code author’s view, the code meets the recognition criteria.

3

We may ask for more information, request a meeting to discuss the code, or provide written comments about the code.

4

If, in our opinion, there is a preliminary case for recognising a code, we will publicly consult and seek views about whether we should or shouldn’t recognise the code, considering the recognition criteria and other relevant considerations.

5

After considering the consultation feedback, if we believe it would be beneficial to recognise the code, we will do so for three years and will list it on our website.

6

At the end of the three years, or before, code authors may review, revise (where appropriate) and re-request a further three years of recognition. Code authors may apply earlier than the end of the three-year period for further recognition, where there is a new version of the code available.

7

At our discretion, we may withdraw recognition at any time if we find that any of the recognition criteria are not met. If a further period of recognition is not sought at the end of the three years, recognition will stop.

FCA-recognised industry codes

If you have a question about an industry code, please contact the code author directly. The code author can be found by selecting the relevant piece of guidance below.

The following table lists industry codes that have received FCA recognition.

Industry code

Date of recognition

Expiry date

FX Global Code (July 2021) 

19 November  2021

22 November 2024

UK Money Markets Code (April 2021)

21 April 2021

21 April 2024

Lending Standards Board Standards of Lending Practice for business customers

5 Augu​​​​​st​ 2020

10 February 2023

Global Precious Metals Market Code (May 2017) 19 November 2021 22 November 2024

Page updates

19/07/2022: Information added How we grant recognition and recognition criteria added to page.
22/04/2021: Information changed UK Money Markets Code (April 2021)