FCA plans consolidated tape for bonds, then shares

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is proposing to set up a consolidated tape (CT) so that investors “can get clear and low-cost trading data.”

The FCA is proposing a CT first for bonds, followed by equities.

A consolidated tape is an electronic system that collates real-time exchange-listed data, such as price and volume, and disseminates it to investors.

The FCA said the consolidated tape will combine multiple sources of trading data into one stream of information.

“This will increase transparency and access to trading data by lowering its cost and improving data quality,” said the regulator.

The FCA intends to run a competitive tender process to appoint a single CT provider for bonds.

“As part of the Edinburgh reforms, the FCA is working with the government with the aim of having the regulatory framework in place by 2024,” said the FCA.

“By building a more complete picture of the market, a CT will reinforce the UK’s position as a leading centre for the listing and trading of bonds.

“The FCA will consult on further reforms to bond and derivative transparency requirements later this year, with the aim of creating a simpler and more effective regime which will enhance the content and delivery of trade data in UK markets alongside the CT.”

Sarah Pritchard, executive director of markets and executive director of international at the FCA, said: “We are adapting our rules to make sure the UK market works well, providing certainty for firms and so providing a good environment for investment.

“The new consolidated tape will help reduce trading costs, increase transparency and improve data quality.

“Our other measures announced today aim to further support the UK’s thriving financial services sector.”