FCA Early Detection over High Fines – 20th Jan 2017

“I’d like to make early detection, rather than early settlement, our primary virtue,” Mark Steward, the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) head of enforcement told a legal gathering in London. Steward told the Practising Law Institute’s annual seminar on securities regulation in Europe that whether fines on firms and individuals fitted the misconduct was more important than their size, while the speed with which the FCA detected, and thoroughly and fairly investigated serious misconduct was more fundamental than whether a particular fine was “big, small, or medium”. “What is important is not the size of the outcome but the perception that detection and responsive action are both inevitable and speedy,” Steward told the meeting. There would continue to be high fines “if that is the right response … if that is proportionate to the scale and nature of the misconduct that has been committed”.