On January 16, the House of Lords European Union Committee published a letter from the Chair, Lord Kinnoull, to John Glen, Economic Secretary to Her Majesty’s Treasury (the Letter). The Letter concerns the recently published Taxonomy Regulation (for more information please see the January 10 edition of Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest).
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On January 20, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a letter to the CEOs of UK-based alternative investment firms to outline the FCA’s view of the key risks of harm to the customers or markets in which such firms operate (the Letter). The FCA defines alternative investment firms as firms that predominately manage alternative investment vehicles (such as hedge funds or private equity vehicles), or manage alternative assets directly, or provide advice on such vehicles or assets.
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On January 20, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a letter to the CEOs of asset management firms to outline their view of the key risks of harm to the customers or markets in which they operate (the Letter). The FCA defines asset management firms as firms that predominately manage mainstream investment vehicles, excluding wealth managers and financial advisers.
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On December 23, 2019, the European Commission’s (EC) Implementing Decision, which grants temporary equivalence to UK central counterparties (CCPs), was published in the Official Journal of the European Union (EU). This means that the Implementing Decision became law on December 24, 2019.


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On November 29, the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a consultation paper on applying the Senior Managers Regime (SMR) to benchmark administrators. (For more information on the Senior Managers and Certification Regime, or SM&CR, please see the July 28, 2017 edition of the Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest.)

SM&CR already applies to banks and insurers, and will apply to most other UK financial services firms as of December 9. Because benchmark administrators only began to be supervised by the FCA in January 2018, the SMR will apply to them starting December 7, 2020. This gives these firms one extra year to prepare for the regime.
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On November 11, the UK Jurisdiction Taskforce (UKJT) published a statement with two key findings on the legal status of cryptoassets and smart contracts under English law (the Statement). The UKJT is a taskforce of the LawTech Delivery Panel of the Law Society, which is the representative body for solicitors in England and Wales. The Statement was made following a public consultation, which closed in June 2019.
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