The FCA has published its Q4 2022 financial promotions data and an annual financial promotions overview for 2022. The Q4 2022 page analyses the latest data covering 1st October 2022 to 31st December 2022 from the FCA’s action against authorised firms breaching financial promotion rules and referrals and investigations into unregulated activity.
In Q4 2022 the FCA reviewed 870 promotions (14% of which involved general insurance and protection), and its intervention resulted in 3,973 amends or withdrawals (from just 42 firms), which compares to just 573 for the whole of 2021. 69% of the 3,973 involved website or social media promotions.
- Retail lending (with 53%), retail investments, and general insurance & protection are the sectors with the highest amend/withdraw outcomes, amounting to just over 80% of FCA interventions with authorised firms.
- Some of the most common breaches involved credit brokers, life insurance providers, and various investment providers.
- In 2022 Q4, the FCA also received 6,374 reports about potential unauthorised businesses.
The data and commentary in relation to the whole of 2022 is highlighting that the FCA required firms to amend or remove 8,582 promotions during 2022 (14 times more than 2021), and that it has published over 1,800 alerts to help prevent consumers from losing their money to scams. The FCA has made significant improvements to the digital tools it uses to find problem firms and misleading adverts.
The web page in relation to the 2022 data is broken up into the following sections:
- key messages
- examples of the FCA’s work on financial promotions during 2022:
- reducing and preventing serious harm
- setting and testing higher standards
- promoting competition and positive change
- information on how to report a misleading financial advert or potential scam
The FCA expects authorised firms issuing and/or approving financial promotions to take responsibility in making sure all communications of financial promotions are clear, fair, and not misleading and comply with relevant FCA rules. This can also include oversight of appointed representatives, or introducer appointed representatives, and marketing across all media platforms such as websites, paid for Google ads and social media sites. The FCA will continue to intervene against authorised firms that make non-compliant financial promotions (the web page includes examples of FCA interventions).
Under the Consumer Duty, firms will need to demonstrate they are providing consumers with information, to help them make informed decisions about financial products and services.