In 2024, the character of change is more foundational – or fundamental – in nature than ever before. From ESG to AI, the shape of the world we live in is changing in a radical way. In this, our annual Global Outlook, we look at the paths through the shifting landscape for firms seeking solid ground.

The shape of regulatory change, as ever, is influenced by geopolitical, technological, and socio-economic factors. As those factors move at speed, financial services regulators are under pressure to keep ahead of the game. We look at how effectively they are doing this globally: juggling the competing demands of financial stability, consumer protection, market confidence, competition and innovation – and, in some cases, economic growth and competitiveness.

Our Financial Services Regulatory (FSR) team surveys the regulatory landscape for 2024 and considers the challenges confronting firms and regulators. We explore the following:

  1. Taming the machine – AI and the role of senior managers: Senior managers need to be confident in their approaches to their firms' use of AI in order to manage regulatory expectations and deliver good customer outcomes.
  2. Spinning plates – Can financial services be regulated efficiently, competitively, innovatively and prudently?: As geopolitics, climate change and digitisation shift the financial services landscape and disparate providers near the threshold of regulation, we explore how the watchdogs are responding.
  3. ESG – Disclosure, reporting, labelling, anti-greenwashing requirements and beyond: Regulatory activity in various jurisdictions is hotting up, making it abundantly clear that, as with climate change, words are not enough.
  4. 'Do the right thing' – Easier said than done: With regulatory demands on firms rising, is it really too much to ask that expectations are made clear?
  5. The future of securities tokenisation and crypto regulation – What you need to know: With crypto currencies and assets firmly lodged in the public mind, regulators need to lay guardrails to facilitate innovation and combat misbehaviour.
  6. Operational resilience – Predicting the unpredictable: Firms and senior management must keep up with rising regulatory expectations, be ready to cooperate and be prepared to proactively offer redress where appropriate.
  7. The evolution of individual accountability regimes: Ground continues to shift under senior managers as regulators refine their approaches.
  8. Fit to fight financial crime: Financial crime risk keeps evolving and firms must stay on their toes.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.