FCA to delay launch of Credit Information Market Study

We are delaying the launch of our Credit Information Market Study (CIMS) Terms of Reference until June 2019.

We remain committed to launching this market study. However, we have decided to delay its launch from Q4 2018/19 to June 2019 because we have had to prioritise resource to launching the market study on general insurance pricing, which was not previously announced in our business plan as a market study.

Background to the Credit Information Market Study

In our consultation on assessing creditworthiness in consumer credit, we invited views on firms’ access to, and use of, credit information including the coverage, timeliness and consistency of data and products provided by credit reference agencies (CRAs).

Building on the responses we received, we announced in our Business Plan 2018/19 that we would launch a market study on credit information in Q4 2018/19. We outlined that we would collect evidence to gain a better understanding of the potential for harm in this market and, if necessary, identify remedies.

The importance of credit information

Consumers’ credit information affects how likely they are to be able to access a range of financial services, including mortgages, loans and credit cards. Credit reference agencies play an important role in the provision of this information to inform firms’ assessments of credit risk and affordability. Consumers may experience harm if this information is not shared effectively or is not of good quality through inappropriate lending decisions or restricted access to credit.