Author Archives: Peter Ch. Hsu

New Regulatory Guidelines on Corporate Governance for Banks, Securities Dealers and Financial Groups/Conglomerates (FINMA Circular 2017/1)

On 1 November 2016, FINMA published its new circular 2017/1 on “Corporate governance – banks” streamlining the regulatory framework on corporate governance for banks, securities dealers, financial groups and conglomerates by defining partially revised minimum requirements and underlying principles. The new circular consolidates and replaces three former FINMA circulars and addresses the experiences made in the financial crisis as well as the revised international standards. The most significant changes pertain to i) FINMA’s commitment to a more principle based approach and consistent application of the principle of proportionality, ii) the introduction of provisions for the audit and risk committee of the governing body as well as iii) the possibility to delegate the internal audit function to another unregulated group company, provided such group company fulfills certain minimum requirements regarding capabilities and resources. The new circular will enter into force on 1 July 2017.

By Peter Ch. Hsu / Sandro Fehlmann (Reference: CapLaw-2017-17)

Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) Position Paper on Distribution Rules

In the aftermath of the turmoil on the global financial markets which has become prominently known and felt since the year 2008, FINMA, first in its discussion paper on regulating the production and distribution of financial products to retail clients (Distribution Report) and now in its position paper on the regulation of the production and distribution of financial products (Position Paper on Distribution Rules) has made proposals on how to better protect clients investing in financial products. This article provides a summary overview over the 18 key points which FINMA makes in its Position Paper on Distribution Rules and, to some extent, puts them into perspective.