Packaged Retail and Insurance-based Investment Products

The Packaged Retail and Insurance-based Investment Products Regulation (PRIIPs)

The aim of the PRIIPs Regulation is to encourage efficient EU markets by helping investors to better understand and compare the key features, risk, rewards and costs of different PRIIPs, through access to a short and consumer-friendly Key Information Document (KID).

The PRIIPs Regulation only applies to products that are defined as PRIIPs and only if the PRIIP is made available to retail investors. Retail investors are:

  • retail clients, or
  • customers (as referred to in the Insurance Mediation Directive (IMD)), where they would not qualify as professional clients under the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID)

A PRIIP is an investment where, regardless of its legal form, the amount repayable to the retail investor is subject to fluctuations because of exposure to reference values or to the performance of one or more assets that are not directly purchased by the retail investor; or an insurance-based investment product which offers a maturity or surrender value that is wholly or partially exposed, directly or indirectly, to market fluctuations.

Identifying whether a particular product is a PRIIP may not be straightforward as the concept of ‘exposure to reference values’ is wide. There is ongoing discussion in the market in relation to which features will bring an instrument within scope of PRIIPS which Bank of Scotland is monitoring. Current PRIIPS may include FX, Interest Rate and Commodity derivatives, amongst others, when sold to retail categorised clients.

Bank of Scotland CB Markets products that are not PRIIPs include, amongst others:

  • deposits (other than structured deposits as defined in MiFID);
  • FX Spot transactions;
  • lending products

Key Information Documents (KIDs) required under PRIIPs

The KID is a stand-alone, standardised document prepared for each investment, at the product level, and whose form and content is governed by mandatory rules set out in the PRIIPs Regulation and its underlying rules & guidance. A KID can be up to a maximum of 3 sides of A4-sized paper and may refer to where detailed information can be found. Each KID contains generic disclosures for each different type of PRIIP, which is presented in a pre-determined sequence of sections. The sections are:

  • What is this product?
  • What are the risks and what could I get in return?
  • What happens if [name of the PRIIP manufacturer] is unable to pay out?
  • What are the costs?
  • How long should I hold it and can I take money out early?
  • How can I complain?
  • Other relevant information

The “PRIIPs Regulation” (EU Regulation 1286/2014) in respect of packaged retail and insurance-based investment products (such products in scope of the PRIIPs Regulation, “PRIIPs”) is a new regulation applying from 1 January 2018 throughout Europe.

A “PRIIP” is defined in the PRIIPs Regulation as “an investment…where, regardless of the legal form of the investment, the amount repayable to a retail investor is subject to fluctuations because of exposure to reference values or to the performance of one or more assets which are not directly purchased by the retail investor” (Article 4(1)).

For these purposes, a Retail Investor means a person who is one (or more) of: (i) a retail client as defined in point (11) of Article 4(1) of the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive 2014/65/EU (“MiFID II”); or (ii) a customer within the meaning of Directive 2002/92/EC (as amended the "Insurance Mediation Directive"), where that customer would not qualify as a professional client as defined in point (10) of Article 4(1) of MiFID II; or (iii) not a qualified investor as defined in Directive 2003/71/EC (as amended, the "Prospectus Directive").

The regulation’s aim is to harmonise the information provided to Retail Investors that transact in investment products, such as (but not limited to) Foreign Exchange Forward Contracts, Interest Rate Swaps and Commodity Swaps. This is done through providing Retail Investors access to the so-called KID.

The KIDs are short, stand-alone, standardised documents whose form and content is governed by mandatory rules set out in the PRIIPs Regulation and its underlying rules & guidance. They are generic disclosures for each different type of PRIIP providing consumer-friendly, consistent and clear information to help Retail Investors to better understand and compare the key features, risk, rewards and costs of different PRIIPs provided by those selling them.

FSCS Guidelines

We would note that most of our corporate customers may not be eligible for FSCS protection as generally they would need to be categorised as a 'Small Company' under the Companies Act 1985 or Companies Act 2006.