Applying to provide licensed market services

If you intend to provide financial services under the FMC Act

If you're registered, or in the process of registering, as a financial service provider (FSP), you can apply to the Financial Markets Authority (FMA) for a licence to provide services under the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013 (FMC Act).

Market services you need to be licensed for

There are 9 financial services defined in the FMC Act that you need a licence to provide.

Manager of a registered scheme – licensed

A manager of a registered scheme manages the scheme’s investments, and administers the scheme. A registered scheme is offered in accordance with regulations under the FMC Act.

A managed investment scheme pools money from a number of investors, who rely on the expertise of the scheme manager to preserve their investment.

Refer to the legislation

Discretionary Investment Management Service (DIMS)

Discretionary investment management services (DIMS) are those where an investor gives a provider the authority to make decisions about buying and selling financial products on their behalf, often without having to refer to them.

If the DIMS provider’s clients include retail investors, they must be licensed by the FMA, except where the provider is:

  • a provider to wholesale investors only
  • not required to be licensed, owing to an FMA exemption, or exemption in the FMC Act
  • an authorised body that is authorised to provide the service under a licensee’s licence.

Refer to the legislation

Independent trustee of a restricted scheme – licensed

Every restricted managed investment scheme must have a licensed independent trustee. A restricted scheme is a KiwiSaver, superannuation or workplace savings scheme registered as a managed investment scheme on the Disclose Register .

Refer to the legislation

Derivatives issuer - licensed

A derivatives issuer is anyone in the business of entering into derivatives.

The FMC Act contains a wide definition of derivatives, which include:

  • futures contracts and forwards
  • options (except options to acquire an equity security, a debt security or a managed investment product by way of issue)
  • swaps
  • contracts for difference, margin contracts and rolling spot contracts
    caps, collars, floors and spreads.

A derivatives issuer must hold a licence from the FMA if they make a regulated offer of derivatives, except where they are:

  • a provider to wholesale investors only
  • not required to be licensed, owing to an FMA exemption, or exemption in the FMC Act
  • an authorised body that is authorised to provide the service under a licensee’s licence.

Refer to the legislation

Provider of prescribed intermediary services – licensed

This financial service is split into 2 categories – the provision of crowd funding, and peer-to-peer lending services. 

Operating a crowdfunding service (licensee)

A crowdfunding service is where you act as an intermediary between companies issuing shares and investors by providing the facility, usually a website, where the offer can be made to the public.

Operating a peer-to-peer lending service (licensee)

A peer-to-peer lending service is one where you act as an intermediary between borrowers and lenders. Loans are usually for personal, charitable or small business purposes.

Refer to the legislation

Financial advice service as financial advice provider (FAP) – licensee

Under the new regime, regulated financial advice to retail clients can only be provided by, or on behalf of, a financial advice provider (FAP) licensed by the FMA.

Financial advice is where a provider:

  • makes a recommendation, or gives an opinion, about buying or selling financial advice products, or
  • designs an investment plan based on a client’s investment goals and analysis of their financial situation, which includes one or more recommendations on how to achieve those goals.

This service can be offered directly, or through a financial adviser or nominated representative, who are not required to be licensed themselves.

Refer to the legislation

Operating a financial product market

A licence from the FMA is required for an entity to operate a financial product market in New Zealand, or an overseas-regulated market. A licence is not necessary to operate a wholesale market.

If you are relying on an exemption, select that option from the list of financial services.

Refer to the legislation

For a definition of a ‘financial product market’ refer to the FMC Act.

Supervisor under an FMC offer

A supervisor is defined as a person licensed to supervise either a registered scheme or a regulated offer of debt securities.

Refer to the legislation

Administrator of a financial benchmark 

An administrator of a financial benchmark is a person who controls the generation and operation of a financial benchmark. A benchmark administrator licensed by the FMA should select this service.

Applying for a licence

Before you apply for a licence to the FMA you’ll need to be either registered or preparing to register as an FSP on the Financial Service Providers Register (FSPR).

When you apply to register on the FSPR, you’ll be asked to select the financial service(s) you intend to provide. If any of these are licensed services under the FMC Act, you must then apply to the FMA for a licence. The licensed service will only display on your FSP registration once the FMA has approved the licence.

If you're adding a licensed market service

If you are already registered and wish to provide an additional service that requires a licence, you’ll need to add the new service to your registration and apply to the FMA.

Your details are retrieved automatically when you enter your FSP number in an online application to the FMA.

Filing your annual confirmation

Every provider registered on the FSPR must file an annual confirmation and pay the associated fee and levies.

FMA levies

When you file your annual confirmation you must pay a levy to the FMA. The amount you pay depends on:

  • the financial service(s) you provide, and
  • the class that applies to your service(s) under Financial Markets Authority (Levies) Regulations 2012.

All help topics

Getting started on the register 4 guides

A new financial advice regime came into effect on 15 March 2021 which also brought about changes to the Financial Service Providers Register.

Registering a financial service provider (FSP) 9 guides

Dispute resolution schemes (DRSs) 2 guides

If you provide financial services to retail clients, you must join a DRS within 10 working days of registering and keep your membership details up to date on the Financial Service Providers Register (FSPR).

Applying to provide licensed services 4 guides

Filing an annual confirmation 3 guides

To remain registered as a financial service provider (FSP) you must confirm your FSP's details and services each year. Find out how to file your confirmation online, or to change the month you do it

Managing your registration as a financial service provider (FSP) 6 guides

Deregistration and reregistration 3 guides

You can voluntarily deregister a financial service provider (FSP), or it may be deregistered by the Registrar. In some circumstances you can object to a deregistration, or apply to have the FSP reregistered.

Paying fees and levies 3 guides

If you're a financial service provider (FSP), you pay fees for some transactions, including registration. You also pay levies to the Financial Markets Authority (FMA). There are several ways to pay.

Managing your online services account 6 guides

Your FSPR online services account allows you to keep your FSP's contact and payment details up to date. From your account dashboard you can view and manage outstanding applications and tasks.