(Adds details on funding)
LONDON, March 30 (Reuters) - The Financial Conduct Authority will set out plans on Monday for an increase in its annual funding requirement for 2014-15, Sky News reported late Sunday.
The multi-media news service said the financial regulator is expected to budget its annual funding to just under 450 million pounds ($748.69 million), about 3 percent above the 432.1 million pounds it said it required last year.
The FCA’s 2014-15 budget does not take into account the cost of regulating thousands of consumer credit providers, which will transfer to the auspices of the regulator for the first time this week, Sky said.
The news service reported without citing sources that the fees will be frozen for thousands of the smallest firms regulated by the FCA, with the minimum charge remaining at 1,000 pounds.
Earlier in the day, the Sunday Times reported that Martin Wheatley, chief executive of the FCA, is facing calls for his resignation after a gaffe that wiped billions of pounds from the value of insurance companies.
The newspaper said the Association of British Insurers (ABI) is expected to write to finance minister George Osborne to complain about the FCA, which has been accused of creating a false market in insurers’ shares.
The FCA was due to announce a review into the life insurance industry in its annual business plan on Monday. But a senior FCA supervisor outlined plans for the review in a press interview on Friday, which resulted in sharp falls in share prices across the sector, including Resolution, Aviva, Legal & General, Standard Life and Prudential.
The FCA later in the day said the review wouldn’t look at sales practices nor would it apply current standards to old policies, such as on the level of premature exit charges, after which the insurers’ share prices recovered some of their losses.
The Sunday Times said senior sources at four of Britain’s biggest insurers had told it that Wheatley’s position was untenable following Friday’s events.
Both the FCA and the ABI declined to comment.
On Saturday Andrew Tyrie, the head of the UK Parliament’s Treasury Committee, described the issue as an “extraordinary blunder”. ($1 = 0.6011 British Pounds) (Reporting by James Davey in London and Aashika Jain in Bangalore; Editing by Greg Mahlich, Bernard Orr)