Swiss Asset Management: regulatory changes

Swiss Asset Management: regulatory changes

Under its legal and regulative mechanism, FINMA imposed new regulatory changes for asset management and trust firms which, in line with them, are obliged to get licensed. The period for transition to new standards comes to an end in December 2022. To bring clarity, FINMA provided insight into the measures that have been undertaken against providers of pοrtfolio administration and trustee services.

Key points of Swiss asset management company licensing

As the FinΙA became effective at the beginning of 2020, both pοrtfolio managers, as well as trustees, have fallen under a licensing obligation. Art. 74 of FinIA grants such legal entities an implementation period for the proper fulfillment of the licensing terms, associate to a supervisοry organization (below mentioned as SO), and send a request to the regulator.
Aiming to inform applicants about the ongoing status of the authorization process and explain the measures undertaken to date, FINMA has published new guidance. In that statement, the regulative authority advised that all companies provide their complete applications to SOs by June 2022. Those companies that submitted their applications timely to the SOs are ready for the challenges of the authorizing procedures.

Institutions that have not yet initiated their licensing processes must admit that they may fail to complete the process till the end of the transition through their fault. As a result, they will not be approved for any deadline extension.

According to data from the SOs, they had 765 requests pending on 30 June 2022. The majority of the applicants have thus complied with the communicated deadline of 30 June 2022 for providing their applications. Hence, as of 31 July 2022, a total of 1 535 organizations were undergoing the licensing process or have already successfully finished it.

Also, it should be noted that in cases of infringements of financial law, FINMA imposes sanctions and will also do so if entities fail to apply till the end of the implementation period on 31 December 2022. For such latecomers there will be no prolonged deadlines or opportunities to apply a second time for a Swiss portfolio management license.

The liability for taking action in due course and staying in line with deadlines ending on December 2022 lies with the institutions. The SOs conduct preliminary reviews of the applications in line with FINMA’s stipulated terms.

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