We require insurance and mortgage intermediaries to report certain information to us on a regular basis. Our rules relating to reporting requirements are in SUP 16.
We need to receive timely information from firms that carry on mortgage and insurance mediation activities so that we can effectively supervise them. The information we collect helps us to monitor firms' adherence to the threshold conditions (see Part I, paragraph 4.2.5) and specific rule requirements, and allows us to spot trends in individual firms and in the market as a whole. It also helps us to identify firms on which we should target supervisory attention.
The reporting requirements for mortgage and insurance intermediaries are set out in the Retail Mediation Activities Return (RMAR), which firms must submit electronically via the internet, using our 'Firms Online' system (www.fsa.gov.uk/pages/doing/regulated/firms/index.shtml). The RMAR is 'tailored' for each individual firm in line with its regulated activities and other factors, such as legal status. This is to ensure that we only ask for information that is relevant to the supervision of each firm.
The Handbook requirements relating to RMAR reporting come into force on 1 April 2005. So, firms need to ensure that they are collecting the necessary data from this date. Starting in July 2005, we will require the RMAR to be submitted twice each year within 30 business days of the end of the relevant reporting period. The reporting periods are:
the six months immediately following a firm's accounting reference date; and
the six months immediately preceding a firm's accounting reference date.
Larger firms, defined as those with annual income of more than £5m in the previous year, will be required to submit the financial information sections every three months.
There is a transitional arrangement in place for smaller firms (defined as those with annual income of less than £60,000). For the first year this arrangement exempts these firms from the requirement to submit financial information at their financial year mid-point (making the financial reporting requirements annual rather than half yearly).
The reporting requirements are in SUP 16.7.76 R to SUP 16.7.81 G. In SUP 16 Ann 18A, we list the data items within the RMAR and SUP 16 Ann 18BG contains guidance notes to help you complete it. Further help is available as part of the Firms Online system, and we will also make an online training course available on our website in due course.
Your firm is also required to check each year, within 30 business days of its accounting reference date, that we have the correct 'standing data' for the firm (16.10.4R). A firm's standing data is the information in SUP 16 Annex 16 R and includes, for example, the name and registered office of the firm, the regulated activities for which the firm has permission, the name and address of the firm's auditor (if applicable) and its accounting reference date. Your firm should check its standing data through the Firms Online system (www.fsa.gov.uk/pages/doing/regulated/firms/index.shtml) - as explained in Part I, paragraph 10.2.6 - and notify us if any data is incorrect. This requirement is in addition to the notification requirements set out in Part I, paragraph 11.2 below.
We also collect data (known as product sales data or 'PSD') on individual transactions in mortgages and pure protection products. However, this data is submitted by the product providers rather than the intermediary firms (see SUP 16.11 for details). This information enables us to:
identify which intermediaries (and product providers) are selling particular types of product (so helping us target both our firm specific and our thematic work);
identify business being undertaken by particular intermediary firms; and
identify trends in different marketplaces, in connection with particular types of products and in connection with individual firms.