A regulatory agency is a public authority or government agency responsible for exercising authority over an entity in a regulatory or supervisory capacity. Global financial markets are highly regulated, providing the regulations, rules and enforcement action to demonstrate stability and investor confidence.
In some countries, there is one regulatory agency and it can sometimes be the central banking authority. When countries have different types of financial markets, such as stock exchanges, commodity exchanges and derivative exchanges, they may have a separate regulatory agency for each.
Each country that has a financial market or exchange will have at least one regulatory agency to provide regulations, rules and enforement of the financial markets. In many instances, the regulatory agency will have oversight on members of the exchange as well as brokers.
We have divided up regulatory agencies into 8 regions, which are North America, South America, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Southeast Asia & Oceania. You will find regulatory agencies in each of these regions so that you can research and learn more about the rules and protections governing foreign investors.
Know the local rules and regulations. Before investing in a foreign market, review the regulators website to undertstand if foreign ownership is allowed on the local exchange. In addition, for greater investor protection, it is important to know who the regulatory agency is and if they have a history of enforcing investor protection.
The most successful investors and risk managers use every tool at their disposal, which includes understanding and using regulatory agency information. While this has little bearing on a country's economic condition, reviewing this information will help provide an indication of the protections a foreign investor may expect in that country.