Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 Explanatory Notes

Section 138: General rule-making power

253.This section confers a power on the Authority to make rules applying to authorised persons with respect to their carrying on of regulated and unregulated activities.  Rules made under this section are referred to as “general rules” and can only be made to protect the interests of consumers.  There need not be a direct relationship between the authorised persons to whom the rules apply and the consumers who are protected by the rules - so, for example, the Authority will be able to make rules under this section to protect the interests of beneficiaries of trusts, to further market integrity, as required by the Investment Services Directive, or to protect against systemic risk.

254.The bulk of the Authority’s handbook of rules and guidance will be constructed using the rule-making power in this section. The power will also enable the Authority to make other rules, including rules relating to firms’ systems and controls and rules regulating the conduct of firms’ business with customers.  These could, for example, include “know your customer” rules and “disclosure” requirements.

255.The provisions in this section enable the Authority to make rules at differing levels of detail, from rules with a high level of generality, which the Authority refers to as principles, to detailed conduct of business provisions.

256.Sections 152 to 155 set down the procedural requirements which the Authority must follow when making rules.

Back to top