Joint Forum
Archived 9/20/2016

Archived Key Issue

The Joint Forum was created in 1996 for the regulators of banking, securities and insurance to address cross-sectoral issues that are common among the three financial sectors. The Joint Forum comprises the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS), the International Organization of Securities Commission (IOSCO), and the International Association of Insurance Supervisors (IAIS), each of whom have an equal number of senior supervisors representing each supervisory constituency. Representatives of all three sectors from 15 countries are represented at present in the Joint Forum which includes: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom and United States.

The 2008 global financial crisis drew increased attention to the need for cooperative efforts to improve international regulatory standards. All three sectors have made and are continuing to make efforts to address issues arising from the crisis. In this respect, the Joint Forum’s Differentiated Nature and Scope of Financial Regulation (DNSR) report (January 2009) remains a key work product. While much has already been accomplished based on the recommendations therein, further enhancement of cross-sector communication and cooperation is expected in the future.

The Joint Forum coordinates the work of international financial standard setters; but it does not have the power to pass regulations. It can, however, make strong recommendations, and these are often adopted by member nations, as well as other countries with an interest in following the latest standards in the financial industry. In addition to releasing cross-sectoral reports, the Joint Forum develops guidance, principles and identifies best practices that are of mutual interest to all three supervisory standard setters. In September 2012, the Joint Forum issued its report on principles for supervising financial conglomerates. The updated principles, which revise the Joint Forum's 1999 principles, strongly inter-relate with the IAIS ComFrame (Common Framework for the Supervision of Internationally Active Insurance Groups) project and the group supervision work undertaken by the NAIC.

The Joint Forum finalized two reports in 2014. A report titled "Point of Sale disclosure in the insurance, banking and securities sectors" was released in April 2014, and identifies and assesses differences and gaps in regulatory approaches to point of sale (POS) disclosure for investment and savings products across the insurance, banking and securities sectors. The Joint Forum’s Report on supervisory colleges for financial conglomerates,” released in September 2014, examines how far cross-sectoral issues, and specific questions related to financial conglomerates, are effectively addressed within supervisory colleges. The Joint Forum most recent report, “Developments in credit risk management across sectors: current practices and recommendations,” released in June 2015 provides insight into the current supervisory framework around credit risk, the state of credit risk management at firms and implications for the supervisory and regulatory treatments of credit risk.

The Superintendent of Financial Services of New York State, Benjamin M. Lawsky, currently represents U.S. state insurance regulators at the Joint Forum. In addition, the NAIC International Insurance Relations (G) Committee supports the work of the Joint Forum by attending meetings to represent the views of U.S. insurance regulators in discussions of issues of significance to insurance commissioners, and by commenting on guidance and principles papers of common interest. The Committee reports the developments of the Joint Forum at NAIC National Meetings.