Before he steps down, Woolard will chair a review on the future regulation of the unsecured credit market, reporting to the FCA board.
He has worked for the FCA since 2013, joining as the executive director of strategy and competition. He was promoted to interim chief executive in March taking over from Andrew Bailey who is now the governor of the Bank of England.
Woolard will not take up any external appointment until at least six months after the end of his executive role.
The review will concentrate on how regulation can better support a healthy unsecured lending market. It will consider the impact of the coronavirus on employment security and credit scores, changes in business models and new developments in unsecured lending including the growth of unregulated products in retail and the workplace.
Woolard will be assisted by an advisory group and will make recommendations to the FCA board early next year.
The review will support the FCA’s Consumer Credit business priority, which it announced as part of its 2020/21 Business Plan in April of this year. This initative aims to ensure consumer credit markets work well.
Woolard (pictured) said: “It has been a tremendous honour to serve as chief executive of the FCA at such a critical time for the country and financial services.
“I’d like to thank my many colleagues over the last eight years for all their help and support. I am delighted to be asked to lead a timely and significant review where access to sustainable credit is of great importance to so many people.”
Charles Randell, chair of the FCA, added: “I am grateful for Chris’s contribution to the FCA, particularly during the last six months as he has led us through the coronavirus crisis with huge energy and skill.
“Chris’s deep understanding of the unsecured credit market makes him the ideal person to advise the board on the development of regulation to support sustainable unsecured lending. Unsecured lending can be critical to helping people through tough times but can cause serious harm if it’s not well regulated.”