Promoting competition

What we’re doing to promote effective competition in the interests of consumers.

When competition works well, consumers are empowered and informed. They can make sense of the information they receive and can take their business elsewhere if they’re not happy.

Firms strive to win custom based on service, quality, price, better product variety and innovation. In turn, this helps deliver even better outcomes for consumers, while also supporting the sustainable growth and international competitiveness of the UK. 

However, there are many ways in which competition can be weakened. Firms may exploit the difficulties consumers face in making choices about often complex services. They may also collude to fix and therefore raise the prices they offer consumers.

Healthy competition relies on appropriate levels of consumer protection and integrity in the financial system. In a healthy system:

  • consumers know they can trust the firms they buy from and are protected if something goes wrong
  • markets are open to entry and innovation, and successful, innovative firms thrive, while unsuccessful firms change or exit

Read about our approach to competition

Our role

We have an objective to promote effective competition in the interests of consumers. We work towards that objective, as far as the work is compatible with advancing our other objectives.

This means that competition is central to our thinking across all our work.

We can also enforce against breaches of competition law for the provision of financial services generally, alongside the Competition and Markets Authority. In April 2019, this was expanded to include claims management services provided in Great Britain. 

All businesses must comply with competition law. There can be serious consequences for non-compliance, including fines.

How we promote competition

We investigate markets, identify concerns and take steps to address issues that could distort effective competition. Find out more about our market studies.

Contact us

Please tell us if you feel that your efforts to compete are being unfairly held back, or if competition in your sector isn’t working well for consumers.

We’re interested to hear about anything that could be holding back healthy competition. For example:

  • common industry practices preventing others doing things differently 
  • specific behaviour of one or more of your competitors that may be preventing other firms accessing consumers or markets 
  • regulations that you consider overly burdensome 

We also welcome information from industry participants, representative groups and the public about markets that don’t appear to be working well.

You can tell us about these concerns or complaints by:  

  • getting in touch with our contact centre 
  • emailing: [email protected] 
  • writing to: Competition Division, Financial Conduct Authority, 12 Endeavour Square, London E20 1JN

Page updates

: Link changed Updated link to approach to competition
: Information added on how we advance both our primary and secondary objectives.
: Information changed New examples of our competition work and removal of image.