Client Asset and Investor Money Regulations
On 30 March 2015, the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI) issued two sets of regulations: Client Asset Regulations and Investor Money Regulations (Regulations). The CBI also published guidance for Investment Firms and guidance for Fund Service Providers to assist industry in interpreting the Regulations.
The CBI’s rationale in issuing the Regulations was to strengthen the safeguards around client assets and investor money. In its press release accompanying the Regulations, the CBI states that “the Regulations will ensure that both investment firms and fund service providers will have stronger systems and controls in place to protect the ownership rights of clients and investors respectively. In addition investment firms and fund service providers will have a process in place which, in the event of insolvency, will facilitate the expeditious return of client assets or investor money.”
Director of Markets Supervision, Gareth Murphy, said "The publication of these regulations marks a significant development with regard to the safeguarding of client assets and investor money in Ireland. The development of these regulations is the outcome of a lengthy period of industry consultation with investment firms and funds service providers. The Central Bank will closely monitor the implementation of these regulations so as to ensure that our aim of enhancing investor protection and safeguarding client assets is achieved."
The release of the Regulations follows a consultation process which the CBI commenced on 2 August 2013 with the issue of the ‘Client Asset Regulations and Guidance – Consultation Paper CP 71’. This consultation closed on 31 October 2013, and the CBI has now published the Feedback to the Consultation on its website.