FMA Releases 2015 Annual Report under Flagship Regulatory Regime

The report is the first iteration published under the Financial Markets Conduct Act, highlighting yearly activity until June 30, 2015.

New Zealand’s Financial Markets Authority (FMA) has released its 2015 annual report, which marks a key turning point not only for the FMA’s compliance initiatives but also for New Zealand’s financial markets.

Overall, the annual FMA report is the first iteration published under the fully implemented Financial Markets Conduct (FMC) Act, highlighting activity for the 12 months up until June 30, 2015. The report can be read in full by accessing the following link.

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The FMA’s report has focused on a re-organization of its priorities and a unified operating model for conduct regulation that has already begun to coalesce. The FMA’s activities this year have also revealed some new trends and apparent changes, including the following:

  • The extensive use of formal consultations as the FMA fine-tunes the application of regulations
  • Significant work on readying the relevant sectors for licensing under the FMC Act
  • Public companies improving their disclosure in offer documents
  • Increasing capital-raising opportunities either through newly licensed equity crowd funding and peer-to-peer (P2P) platforms
  • Newly utilized specific conduct provision, including warnings, in the FMC Act

According to Rob Everett, FMA Chief Executive, in a recent statement on the annual report, “While the new regime is still in its infancy, we are pleased with the progress in establishing the framework for delivering a modern and flexible approach to regulating financial services. The new licensing framework and our focus on the conduct of the regulated sectors give us a bigger mandate, and with that comes higher expectations.”

“The FMA will be demanding in the standard of conduct we want to see from providers of financial services and products and, in turn, the industry, investors and stakeholders have high expectations for the regulator to achieve results. This report shows a gear change in the new regime as the FMA and firms begin to make full use of it,” he added.

“Our aim across all our activities is to increase confidence in financial markets and to support economic growth in New Zealand,” added Mr. Everett.

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