The Financial Conduct Authority regulates along with the Bank of England's Prudential Authority, the UK's financial markets. The FCA was created by Tony Blair's Labour government when FSMA 2002 was passed, creating one unified UK regulator called the Financial Services Authority. The SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission), is considered the US equivalent.
Due to the collapse of Northern Rock, a UK bank, following the global financial markets crisis precipitated by the collaspse of Lehman Brothers, the UK's regulatory approach was revised. Clive Briault, who headed the Retail Supervision of all UK financial markets firms lost his job and was the scapegoat for the UK's light touch regulation. The Conservative government decided to merge the regulatory powers of the FSA with the Bank of England again, creating two separate entities, the PRA (Prudential Regulatory Authority), and the FCA (financial Conduct Authority).
Wholesale markets have dedicated account managers who manage relationships with large firms such as HSBC, Blackrock and others which have significant impact on UK financial markets.
Retail firms have access to a call centre and support but do not have dedicated teams to support them. Firms such as mortgage intermediaries and insurance brokers fit into this category.
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