Guidance on Client Asset Requirements


  1. The third edition of the Central Bank (Supervision and Enforcement) Act 2013 (Section 48(1)) (Investment Firms) Regulations 2023 (the third edition of the Investment Firms Regulations) applies to investment firms from 1 July 2023 and Part 6 applies to credit institutions from 1 January 2024.
  2. This Guidance Note is intended to be read in conjunction with the Client Asset Requirements as contained in Part 6 of the third edition of the Investment Firms Regulations (the CAR).

    Purpose and content

  3. The primary purpose of this Guidance Note is to assist investment firms, as defined in the CAR, in complying with the CAR.
  4. An investment firm as defined in the CAR that holds client assets or enters into Title Transfer Collateral Arrangements (TTCA) with clients must do so in accordance with the CAR. Investment firms are reminded of their obligation to comply with the MiFID II safeguarding of client asset rules in addition to the CAR.
  5. An investment firm should be able to demonstrate, when requested to do so by the Central Bank, compliance with all aspects of the CAR and the MiFID II safeguarding of client asset rules.
  6. Unless indicated otherwise, all references to “investment firm(s)” in this Guidance Note are intended to include credit institution(s) undertaking MiFID investment business. Where a piece of guidance specifically relates to credit institutions holding client assets, this will be stated.
  7. The Central Bank’s client asset regulatory regime is based on seven core principles of client asset protection, namely:
    • Segregation;
    • Designation and registration;
    • Reconciliation;
    • Calculation;
    • Client disclosure and consent;
    • Risk management; and
    • Client asset examination.

    Both the CAR and this Guidance Note contain chapters which correspond with each of these principles.

  8. Guidance is only provided where it is considered it may assist in the interpretation of the CAR; it is not provided for each requirement contained in the CAR. This Guidance Note is not comprehensive and does not replace or pre-empt any legislative provisions.
  9. The content of this Guidance Note should not be construed as legal advice or a legal interpretation of the CAR. It is a matter for an investment firm who may fall within the scope of the CAR to seek legal advice regarding the application or otherwise of the CAR to its particular set of circumstances.
  10. The terms used in this Guidance Note have the same meaning as in the CAR and the European Union (Markets in Financial Instruments) Regulations 2017 (S.I. No. 375 of 2017) (MiFID Regulations) unless otherwise indicated. Terms which are not defined in the CAR or the MiFID Regulations have been included in the Glossary.
  11. The Central Bank may update or amend this Guidance Note from time to time, as appropriate.

Issued: 4 July 2023

Last revision: 4 July 2023