Betting: Television

Treasury written question – answered on 7th September 2020.

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Photo of Charles Walker Charles Walker Chair, Administration Committee, Chair, Administration Committee

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps the Government has taken to help regulate the advertising of spread-betting sites across television channels; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of John Glen John Glen Minister of State (Treasury) (City), The Economic Secretary to the Treasury

The Government takes the issue of consumer protection in relation to spread betting very seriously. Spread bets are subject to financial regulation, and as such the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) ensures consumers are properly informed and protected from any harms that arise from them.

On 1 July 2019, the FCA published Policy Statement (PS)19/18 that finalised rules restricting the sale, marketing and distribution of contract for differences (CFDs) and CFD-like options to retail clients in or from the UK. This includes spread bets. These rules include the mandatory inclusion of standardised risk warnings, and restrictions on the monetary and non-monetary incentives that can encourage retail customers to buy these products, when marketing them.

More broadly, the UK Code of Broadcast Advertising (BCAP Code) restricts spread betting adverts so that they can only be placed on specialist financial channels or in the breaks between programming that is on financial issues.

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