HomeDaily updateOver 10,000 ads axed after FCA intervention

Over 10,000 ads axed after FCA intervention

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Over 10,000 financial adverts and other promotions were withdrawn or changed last year following intervention from the FCA.

The 17% increase (year-on-year) came as the regulator clamped down on the promotion of high-risk investments, illegal crypto asset promotions and influencer-promoted financial products on social media.

The number of consumer alerts published for unauthorised firms and individual rose 21% from 1,800 in 2022 to 2,285 in 2023.

The FCA also accepted voluntary requirements from 18 firms and used its powers on one firm restricting its ability to communicate or approve financial promotions.

The regulator said it remains concerned about the levels of compliance with financial promotions rules.

In particular, the FCA highlighted its concern at the rise of influencers promoting financial products, including credit and investments on social media which often target younger age groups.

Lucy Castledine, director of consumer investments at the FCA, said: “People need clear, fair and accurate information to base their financial decisions on. We will continue to intervene and take action when we identify firms not meeting our minimum standards.”

In 2023 the FCA introduced new rules for firms promoting high-risk investments and the Cryptoasset financial promotions regime.

Under the new crypto asset regime, the FCA issued 450 consumer alerts between 8 October 2023 and 31 December 2023.  

The introduction of the new Consumer Duty in July last year also aimed to improve and raise standards across the market; so that consumers are provided with clear, fair and not misleading financial promotions to enable them to make an informed decision.

During the course of 2023 the FCA scanned 140,000 websites resulting in just over 4,700 websites and social media platforms being reviewed. This led to 1,549 alerts being issued and approximately 538 of the offending websites being taken down.

The regulator also reviewed 350 firms which had previously applied to the FCA for authorisation but later withdrew or had their application rejected. It identified 24 of these firms that had active websites promoting products and services without appropriate permission.

As of 7 February this year, authorised firms need permission from the FCA if they want to approve promotions for unregulated persons.

The FCA said this makes sure firms approving financial promotions have the required competence and expertise for the promotions being offered.   




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