WhenTuesday, May 24th, 12pm to 2pm BST, including a complimentary sandwich lunch
WhereHausfeld, 12 Gough Square, London, EC4A 3DW
FormatThis is a free-to-attend event, but limited places are available so please request a place ASAP. There'll be a great line-up of speakers plus ample scope for discussion and debate.
Why You Should Attend...
Our invite-only event will focus on the rather alarming story of how the Financial Conduct Authority has been shown to have failed to protect consumers from harm, even though they were given sufficient information to take decisive action against Blackmore Bond. The net result is that around £47M of investors’ money has been lost, much of which could have been saved had the FCA acted appropriately when they were told precisely what was going on by a whistleblower.
Here’s some of the coverage from a great write-up by Amy Austin at FT Adviser from back in March 2021, when Peter Gibson was Chair of the APPG on Personal Banking and Fairer Financial Services:
Conservative MP Peter Gibson is calling for an independent report into the Blackmore Bond scandal to investigate exactly what went wrong while criticising the regulator as not being “fit for purpose”.
Gibson, who chairs the all-party parliamentary group on Personal Banking and Fairer Financial Services, said the Blackmore Bond scandal provided further “irrefutable evidence” that the Financial Conduct Authority is failing to regulate effectively.
Blackmore Bond raised millions of pounds from investors to fund property developments between 2016 and 2018, but the company fell into administration in April last year owing £46m to investors after several months of rocky waters in which it failed to pay interest due to bondholders.
Gibson said an independent report by Dame Gloster – who recently published her review into the FCA’s regulation of London Capital & Finance (LCF) – or someone “equally as robust” should be the next step.
He also said parliament should be prepared to scrutinise more closely the work the FCA is doing saying it is currently “not functioning as parliament wishes”….
Gibson said: “Parliament has given the Financial Conduct Authority clear statutory objectives which include protecting consumers from harm but there is mounting evidence that the regulator is consistently failing to deliver.
“It is obvious that the FCA is not for purpose. The real issue now is whether parliament can get it to perform satisfactorily through transformational reform; or whether its issues are so deep-rooted that a more brutal approach is necessary.”
There was also some superb coverage in the Telegraph, with these being perhaps the most powerful points:
“We are seeing a clear pattern of behaviour from the FCA. It shies away from regulatory scrutiny and consistently puts savers at risk.” – Sarah Olney MP.
Kevin Hollinrake MP, a member of the APPG on Personal Banking and Fairer Financial Services said there had been a succession of failures at the Regulator: “Multiple, significant, credible concerns had been raised with the regulator well before the firm’s failure….It is time for a thorough and fully independent review.”
Furthermore, Labour’s Cat Smith, Shadow Cabinet Office Minister said she had “written to the Treasury urging an investigation into negligence on part of the FCA.”
…and in the House of Lords, Baroness Bennett of the Greens and Lib Dem Lord Sharkey have both backed calls for a review.
In our opinion, this meeting is important in that the whistleblower at the heart of the story, Paul Carlier, will be “revealing all” in terms of who at the FCA was told what; and when. Paul’s account is significant because unlike the recent LC & F investment scam revelations, it will not be possible for the senior leadership at the FCA to credibly suggest they did not know what was going on. Therefore, some believe the consequences of this case may be significant.
Will it be “the straw that broke the camel’s back?”
We are hoping our symposium will galvanise support for the reform that is so desperately needed.
At the very least we should all be calling for a thorough independent enquiry, ideally by Dame Gloster who’s report on the LC&F Bondholder’s scandal did a great job of shining a big bright light on the seriousness of the failings at the FCA.
We’re expecting lots of interest in this event, given how topical the subject is, including from Parliamentarians from all parts of the House, and key journalists and campaigners too.
A complimentary sandwich lunch will be provided, courtesy of our hosts for the event, Hausfeld.
You won’t want to miss this one!
Please note that because this is an in-person event and places are limited, we need to closely manage the number of bookings. Please therefore use the ‘Click here to request a place’ button at the top of this page; you will then be advised shortly after whether you have a place.
Finally, please be aware that The Rally for Better Financial Regulation is taking place shortly after the event and starts nearby, at The Royal Courts of Justice. For full details of the Rally, click here: https://trfbfr.org/