Confirmed industry guidance

Read about our process for recognising industry guidance, which we describe as 'FCA confirmation'.

We have created a process for recognising industry guidance, known as 'FCA confirmation'. Read more about our final policy approach, including what FCA confirmation means.

These pages provide firms, guidance producers and consumers with all the relevant information about the production and use of FCA confirmed industry guidance. We also provide access to all pieces of confirmed industry guidance.

Read more about how to obtain FCA confirmation for your guidance or the criteria for granting confirmation.

List of industry guidance

Our confirmation wording

We have reviewed this industry guidance and can confirm that we will take it into account when exercising our regulatory functions. This guidance is not mandatory and is not FCA guidance. Our view does not affect the rights of third parties.

The practical effect of FCA confirmation for firms' compliance

As now, a firm's defence against us is in essence the same whether they follow FCA guidance or FCA confirmed industry guidance – our Decision Procedures and Penalties Manual says:

'The FCA will not take action against a person for behaviour that it considers to be in line with guidance, other materials published by the FCA in support of the Handbook or FCA-confirmed Industry Guidance, which were current at the time of the behaviour in question.' (DEPP 6.2.1(4)G)."

Similarly, as industry guidance is not mandatory (and is one way, but not the only way, to comply with requirements), we do not presume that because firms are not complying with it they are not meeting our requirements.

However, where a breach has been established, industry guidance is potentially relevant to an enforcement case. The ways in which we may seek to use industry guidance in an enforcement context are similar to those in which we may use FCA guidance or supporting materials. As set out in the Enforcement Guide (EG 2.9.4) these include:

  1. Help to assess whether it could reasonably have been understood or predicted at the time that the conduct in question fell below the standards required by the Principles.
  2. Explain the regulatory context.
  3. Inform a view of the overall seriousness of the breaches e.g. we could decide that the breach warranted a higher penalty in circumstances where the FCA had written to chief executives in that sector to reiterate the importance of ensuring a particular aspect of its business complied with relevant regulatory standards.
  4. Inform the consideration of a firm's defence that we were judging the firm on the basis of retrospective standards.
  5. Be considered as part of expert or supervisory statements in relation to the relevant standards at the time.

However, we are conscious that industry guidance should not become a new prescriptive regime in place of detailed FCA rules. This, and the specific status of FCA-confirmed industry guidance, will be taken into account when the FCA makes judgments about the relevance of industry guidance in enforcement cases.

Questions on individual pieces of guidance

Please contact the guidance provider directly if you have a question about a particular piece of industry guidance. The guidance provider can be found by clicking on the relevant piece of guidance below. The following table lists industry guidance that has received FCA confirmation.

 

Guidance title

Expiry date

AIC guidance on investment policies

16 July 2011

IMA guidance on paperless renunciation / transfer of units / shares in authorised funds (PDF)

4 January 2016

IBA's LIBOR code of conduct (PDF)
The guidance is confirmed for a period of 3 years from 17 March 2017 or, if earlier, until such time as the Code of Conduct is required to be amended in accordance with the EU Benchmarks Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2016/1011).

17 March 2020

BBA/BSA/Payments UK Guidance on the Banking Conduct of Business sourcebook ​​​​ 31 December 2017