A new supervisory organisation
The self-regulatory bodies OAD-FCT and OAR PolyReg have joined forces to create the supervisory organisation OSFIN. The creation of a new supervisory organisation at national level has occurred against the backdrop of the enactment of the new Swiss Federal Act on Financial Institutions [FinIA] and the Swiss Federal Act on Financial Services [FinSA]. OSFIN Organisation de surveillance financière obtained FINMA authorisation under the FinIA on 6 July 2020.
The self-regulatory bodies PolyReg and OAD-FCT are already supervising, as self-regulatory bodies, around 1,300 financial intermediaries throughout Switzerland with regard to compliance with the provisions of the Swiss Anti-Money Laundering Act, around half of which are portfolio managers. With the creation of the OSFIN, it will be possible to ensure a smooth transition for portfolio managers and trustees over to the new supervisory structure. Financial intermediaries that are subject to the Swiss Anti-Money Laundering Act but not to the new provisions laid down by the FinIA et FinSA as financial institutions will however continue to be supervised by existing self-regulatory bodies.
The FinSA and the FinIA
The FinSA and the FinIA establish uniform competitive conditions for financial intermediaries and enhance protection for clients. The FinSA sets out the rules of conduct that financial service providers must comply with towards their clients. It also stipulates obligations concerning prospectuses and requires that a clearly understandable summary of the essential information be drawn up for financial instruments. As regards the FinIA, it essentially harmonises the rules governing authorisations for financial service providers
Portfolio managers and trustees
One consequence in particular of the FinSA and the FinIA is that portfolio managers and trustees must be authorised by FINMA and supervised by a supervisory organisation.
You can find documents and details concerning the new legislation on the FINMA website.
Portfolio managers and trustees must obtain authorisation from FINMA. The details are provide on its website.
Subjection to supervision by OSFIN
One of the conditions for authorisation is subjection to a supervisory organisation. Therefore, before they are able to submit an application for authorisation, portfolio managers and trustees must submit to supervision by a supervisory organisation such as OSFIN.
Transition periods are provided for under the FinSA and the FinIA. Their applicability is dependent on whether the portfolio manager or the trustee was already being supervised by a self-regulatory body before 1 January 2020.