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Wheatley rolls out FCA vision announcing greater powers to ban

Wheatley rolls out FCA vision announcing greater powers to ban

Martin Wheatley has unveiled his mission statement for new regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The FCA, one of two bodies that will be introduced when the Financial Services Authority (FSA) disappears in 2013, will have greater powers to ban products and promotions if it believes they create risks to consumers.

It will also promote better competition as it aims to become a watchdog that has learned from the City's previous mistakes, and confirmed reports it will be able to name and shame individuals and firms it is investigating.

Wheatley, managing director and chief executive officer designate of the incoming FCA, said: 'We are not here to stand in the way of progress that will be of benefit to consumers.  Our goals as the FCA are clear: we will work for an industry that is better at serving the needs of its customers.'

The FCA will also continue with much of the FSA’s existing work such as preventing unauthorised firms from trying to rip-off consumers and taking enforcement action for cases of wrongdoing.

While it is seeking comments from the industry on its role, Wheatley said the FCA wanted to restore financial services to a sector which has customers at its heart.

He said: 'The FCA offers a huge opportunity for the regulator and firms to start afresh, and work in partnership to reset how we deal with conduct in financial services.

'We see it as the role of the regulator to not only make the relevant markets work well but also to help firms get back to putting their customers at the heart of how they do business.'

Key scandals the FCA will look to learn from include payment protection insurance (PPI) mis-selling.  It will take earlier and more decisive action to deal with problems and devote more resources to analysing possible risks and looking at cross-industry issues to assess the cause of problems, Wheatley said.    

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