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FSA says get ready for day of the Mifid

The FSA is writing to senior managers at regulated firms encouraging them to start preparing for the implementation of the EU’s Markets in Financial Instruments Directive.

As part of the FSA’s awareness drive, it has published a short guide on its website to highlight key areas of the directive, such as the conduct of business and systems and controls requirements. It has also published a revised version of the International Regulatory Outlook, which analyses regulatory change driven by Europe.

Although the final details of the directive will not be published until next year, the FSA says it will affect most regulated firms carrying out investment business, whether or not it falls within Mifid’s scope.

The FSA says Mifid will lead to changes in details on execution, advice, financial promotions, client money and training and competence, which will potentially require changes to firms’ systems, controls, policies and procedures.

But the FSA, which has delayed simplification of the conduct of business handbook until 2007 to incorporate Mifid, has pledged to minimise the impact on firms.

Managing director for wholesale business Hector Sants says: “Implementation of the directive is a major challenge, both for the FSA and for the industry. While November 2007 may seem a long way off, preparing to meet the challenge cannot begin soon enough.”

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