Client money and assets
You must follow rules set out in the Client Assets Sourcebook (CASS) whenever you hold or control client money or safe custody assets as part of your business.
This is to keep money and assets safe if firms fail and exit the market.
To reduce the risk of financial loss, you should:
- identify risks
- assess risks
- mitigate (reduce) risks
Firms holding or controlling client assets must report the value of their assets. This includes:
- investment banks
Your CASS firm type (small, medium or large) is based on the size of your client money and/or custody asset holdings.
What CASS small firms must do
Your firm must make an annual notification about the money and assets you hold to identify if you are small, medium or large. This will enable you to see what your firm’s classification will be (see CASS 1A.2).
|CASS firm type||Highest total amount of client money held in the firm's last calendar year or that you project it will hold during the current calendar year||Highest total value of safe custody assets held in the firm's last calendar year or that you project it will hold during the current calendar year|
|CASS large firm||more than £1 billion||more than £100 billion|
|CASS medium firm||an amount equal to or greater than £1 million and less than or equal to £1 billion||an amount equal to or greater than £10 million and less than or equal to £100 billion|
|CASS small firm||less than £1 million||less than £10 million|
CASS classification questionnaire
You must complete the CASS classification questionnaire every year within 15 working days of 31 December.
We email this in December to your firm’s:
- director or senior manager responsible for CASS (known as CF10a), or
- principal user of the Gabriel online system
If you reported a zero balance in the previous calendar year, you must still complete a questionnaire.
CASS small firms don’t need to complete a Client Money and Asset Return (CMAR).
What CASS medium or large firms must do
If your firm is or becomes a CASS medium or large firm holding client money over £1 million and/or assets over £10m, you must:
- complete a CMAR
- make a director or senior manager responsible for CASS (CF10a)
Complete a monthly Client Money and Asset Return (CMAR)
This gives us an overview of your client money and safe custody assets.
Loan-based crowdfunding firms
If your firm operates in loan-based crowdfunding, you may need to follow certain CASS rules.
See the summary of rules for loan-based crowdfunding platforms for more information.
For client money and asset enquiries email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Or write to: Client Assets Department, Financial Conduct Authority, 25 The North Colonnade, London E14 5HS.
Last updated: 07 Dec 2015
First published: 11 May 2015