Financial institutions continue to face a challenging environment, as governments, legislators and national and international regulators continue to implement and embed wide-ranging regulatory reform programmes and to intensify their supervision and scrutiny of firms’ governance arrangements and conduct of business.
Financial Regulation Group
At the same time, the authorities are showing greater propensity to enforce, through ever more intrusive and extensive investigations.
Against this backdrop, it is vital that clients continue to have access to recognised experts for advice on all aspects across the financial services spectrum.
Our market-leading global group can advise you on all aspects of regulatory compliance, risk management and enforcement work across multiple jurisdictions.
Our team of contentious and non-contentious lawyers can act as key advisers on your most sensitive and reputation-threatening regulatory issues, delivering strategic, technical and commercial advice.
Understanding the challenges from our clients’ perspective
Our relationships with banks, investment managers, trading platforms and exchanges worldwide are unrivalled and longstanding. As a result, we understand the challenges that affect our clients at national, European and international levels, enabling us to deliver incisive advice on critical financial regulatory issues.
Drawing on the depth of our international expertise in complex financial systems and products, we are able to advise across 70 jurisdictions through our offices and relationship firms. The range of work our team handles underlines the quality of our regulatory practice.
Recent highlights include advising:
a number of US, European and Asian headquartered investment banks and other financial institutions on the implications of Brexit for their operations;
more than 15 banks on their implementation of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime;
most of the global bulge sell side and a number of large buy-side clients on their MiFID II implementation projects, advising on issues across the spectrum of financial institutions, products and business lines;
a number of banks in relation to their internal compliance projects to ensure that they meet their obligations under the EU Benchmark Regulation / IOSCO Principles, including a review of index manuals, other policies and related documents, advising on an appropriate control and governance framework and codes of conduct for a benchmark administration business;
a number of clients on how other key global regulatory changes (e.g. ring-fencing, EMIR/Dodd Frank) will require them to restructure their business lines and corporate structures to devise a single model for overall regulatory compliance;
clients in anticipation of, during and in the aftermath of investigations and enforcement proceedings brought against firms by the regulators, including in respect of market conduct, systems and controls, mis-selling, complaint handling and other issues relating to the conduct of business and fair treatment of customers.
Supporting our clients through training
We help our clients navigate the regulatory maze through expert services such as:
Online Services – Through our Online Subscription Products (formerly Blue Flag), we provide multi-jurisdictional, online legal information and eLearning courses, designed to support clients in complying with ever-changing regulation. Our Shareholding Disclosure tool provides comprehensive coverage on disclosure obligations/thresholds, across 41 jurisdictions, with a further 17 new countries currently under development. Our MiFID II Gap Analysis tool outlines the current MiFID II/MiFIR provisions, allowing you to track the latest legislation and the key implications for MiFID-regulated businesses.
Client seminars – FRG Breakfast Briefings are a well recognised forum for uniting legal and compliance professionals from major financial institutions to discuss key sector issues. We also hold other occasional seminars on key updates.
We can help you manage the effect and impact of financial services regulations through standalone strategic advice, as well as acting as integrated team members on complex transactions. Areas include:
Compliance – dealing with local regulatory bodies such as the FCA, PRA and the SFO in the UK, and equivalent bodies around the world
Investigations and enforcement actions by regulatory bodies, covering wide ranging issues including governance, remuneration, complaints handling, insider dealing and market abuse, plus cross-border regulatory investigations involving multiple authorities
The establishment of new mechanisms, such as trading and clearing platforms for the transaction of financial services business
Management of conflicts of interest, global marketing and selling restrictions; and
Documentation, reporting structures and decision-making processes associated with regulatory matters, board and committee regulation, and form and content requirements for transaction and other regulatory reporting.