Payments regulation—the shape of things to come

Payments regulation—the shape of things to come

Will a new regulatory framework for payment systems in the UK lead to a world class payments system?

Original news

New Payment Systems Regulator consults on how it intends to regulate.

The new Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) has set out how it proposes to regulate the £75trn payments industry when it becomes operational on 1 April 2015. Its proposals aim to further its three main objectives: to promote competition, to promote innovation and to ensure payment systems are developed and operated in the interests of their users. Those wishing to comment on the proposals should do so by 12 January 2015.

What is the background to the PSR’s consultation?

Payment systems are vital for the economy. They enable funds to be directly transferred between individuals and institutions. According to the consultation paper, last year the UK’s payment systems processed approximately seven billion transactions, worth a reported £75trn. These systems include those which enable the clearing of cheques and credits, and the interconnections underpinning the ATM or cash machine networks in the UK, as well as the BACS and CHAPS systems.

The Financial Services (Banking Reform) Act 2013 (FS(BR)A 2013) was enacted in December 2013. FS(BR)A 2013, s 40 requires the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to establish a new regulator for payment systems in the UK.

Following a consultation by the FCA on the landscape of the payments systems in the UK, the PSR was created on 1 April 2014 as a subsidiary of the FCA. The PSR will become fully operational in April 2015 and will regulate operators of payment systems, as well as infrastructure and payment service providers.

The PSR consultation paper published in November 2014 seeks responses to the PSR’s proposed regulatory framework, and provides a summary of its pr

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