TCF tops priority list, says UK research

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LONDON – Treating Customers Fairly (TCF) is reportedly the number one challenge for the UK’s financial services firms for the year ahead.

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) initiative was rated as one of the top three risk and regulatory priorities by 83% of firms, according to research released by the Financial Services Discussion Club (FSDC) and business advisor Grant Thornton.

While TCF topped the rankings, financial crime and data security were the next cited priorities, with 35% and 33%. Senior managers from 75 financial firms across the investment banking, asset management, retail banking, and insurance and pensions industries took part in the report.

“There is some valid concern about whether the FSA and firms will have common expectations around TCF. This remains a key area of risk, and firms need to be doubly sure they have properly assessed and recorded their progress and successes. They should also ensure that the solutions firms have come up with for TCF issues are right for their business,” says Ian Gorham, head of financial services at Grant Thornton.

The research says 91% of firms believe they will be in compliance with the FSA’s deadline for TCF this month. Payment protection insurance (PPI) is one controversial product that is expected to come under closer scrutiny.

For those firms that are not complying with TCF, management information is highlighted as a barrier both for TCF and for the implementation of the EU’s Markets in Financial Instruments Directive.

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