United Kingdom (and EU regulation)

ESMA: Transitions and challenges for European securities markets and their regulators

On 16 May 2019, ESMA published a speech from Verena Ross, ESMA Executive Director, on transitions and challenges for European securities markets and their regulators. The speech broadly covers sustainable finance; benchmarks; and regulatory priorities for 2019. Key takeaways from the speech include: in March this year, European co-legislators agreed to a Regulation on Environmental, … Continue Reading

ISDA consults on benchmark fallbacks

On 17 May 2019, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) published two consultations on benchmark fallbacks – the first consultation covers adjustments that would apply to fallback rates in the event certain interbank offered rates (IBORs) are permanently discontinued, and the second consultation relates to pre-cessation issues for LIBOR and certain other IBORs. Specifically, … Continue Reading

ESG and the Commission legislative proposals for disclosures

A new video is now available as part of our ESG video series. In this video, Simon Lovegrove and Beth Duff discuss the European Commission’s action plan on sustainable finance, and specifically the proposal for a Regulation for disclosures. In our next video, Imogen Garner will discuss the current UK developments surrounding ESG.… Continue Reading

ESMA plans to overhaul PRIIPs KID rules

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has initiated work on a broad review of Delegated Regulation (EU) 2017/653 on key information documents (KID) for packaged retail and insurance-based investment products (PRIIPs). In a speech delivered by Evert van Walsum, Head of Investors and Issuers Department at ESMA, on 13 May 2019, it was announced … Continue Reading

Commission request to ESMA on clarifying Article 38 of MAR

On 15 May 2019, the European Commission (Commission) published a letter (dated 20 March 2019) that it sent to the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) regarding technical advice on the report to be submitted by the Commission under Article 38  of the Market Abuse Regulation (MAR). Under Article 38 of MAR, the Commission is … Continue Reading

Speech by David Rule, Executive Director of Insurance Supervision, PRA, on ‘Model use and misuse’

David Rule, Executive Director of Insurance Supervision at the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), has delivered a speech on ‘Model use and misuse’ at the Association of British Insurers Prudential Seminar. The speech highlights PRA concerns about some uses of models. Models are used widely in insurance to mimic various scenarios so that insurers can estimate … Continue Reading

The Proxy Advisors (Shareholders’ Rights) Regulations 2019

On 14 May 2019, there was published on legislation.gov.uk The Proxy Advisors (Shareholders’ Rights) Regulations 2019, together with an explanatory memorandum. These Regulations transpose Article 3j of the revised EU Shareholder Rights Directive (SRD II) into UK law, in line with the UK’s obligations as a member of the EU. Article 3j of SRD II … Continue Reading

UKJT consultation on issues underlying cryptoassets, DLT and smart contracts

On 9 May 2019, the UK Jurisdiction Taskforce (UKJT) published a consultation on identifying the key issues of legal uncertainty regarding cryptoassets, distributed ledger technology (DLT) and smart contracts. The UKJT is one of the six taskforces of the LawTech Delivery Panel. Its objective is to demonstrate that English law and the jurisdiction of England and … Continue Reading

BoE speech on operational resilience work programme

On 14 March 2019, the Bank of England (BoE) published a speech given by Nick Strange, BoE Director, Supervisory Risk Specialists, providing a progress report on operational resilience. Operational resilience is defined in the speech as “the ability of firms, FMIs [financial market infrastructures] and the sector as a whole to prevent, respond to, recover … Continue Reading

Updated information on FCA Discussion Paper on price discrimination in the cash savings market

On 14 May 2019, the FCA updated its webpage on Discussion Paper 18/6 regarding price discrimination in the cash savings market. The Discussion Paper set out a range of options to address issues faced by longstanding customers in the easy access cash savings market. Whilst a Feedback Statement to the Discussion Paper is not yet available, the … Continue Reading

Delegated Regulation on measures to mitigate money laundering and terrorist financing risk under MLD4

On 14 May 2019, there was published in the Official Journal of the EU Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/758 of 31 January 2019 supplementing Directive (EU) 2015/849 with regard to regulatory technical standards for the minimum action and the type of additional measures credit and financial institutions must take to mitigate money laundering and terrorist … Continue Reading

Council of EU adopts banking package reforms

On 14 May 2019, the European Council announced that it had adopted the European Commission’s banking package reforms (relating to the revised Capital Requirements Regulation / Directive, and the revised Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive, and Single Resolution Mechanism Directive). Our extended blog on these reforms can be found here. The proposals implement reforms agreed … Continue Reading

Council of EU adopts EMIR Refit Regulation

On 14 May 2019, the European Council announced that it has adopted the EMIR Refit Regulation at first reading. The announcement states that the Regulation adopted by Ministers amends and simplifies the European Markets Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) “to address disproportionate compliance costs, transparency issues and insufficient access to clearing for certain counterparties.” It also notes … Continue Reading

ESMA keynote address at Swedish Fund Association’s Annual Conference

On 13 May 2019, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published the keynote speech that Evert van Walsum (Head of Investors and Issuers Department, ESMA) gave at the Swedish Fund Association’s Annual Conference. In his speech Mr van Walsum covers sustainable finance, costs and fees borne by investors buying funds and investor protection more … Continue Reading

FCA rejects Complaints Commissioner’s recommendation for ex gratia payment in respect of loss related to defective Financial Services Register

The complainant suffered loss after she invested in a firm which was later identified as a clone.  Before investing, the complainant had contacted the FCA to ask whether the firm (also regulated in Austria) was a regulated entity. The FCA confirmed that the firm was legitimate based on its registration number. The FCA also recommended … Continue Reading

FCA publishes undertaking by firm in relation to unfair termination clause in standard client terms

On 9 May 2019, the FCA published an undertaking given by an investment management firm in relation to a term in its standard client contracts which allowed the firm to terminate the contract without the requirement to provide prior written notice. The FCA considered that the term was likely to be considered unfair under the … Continue Reading

HoC Treasury Committee report on consumers

On 10 May 2019, the House of Commons’ Treasury Committee (the Committee) published its twenty-ninth report of session 2017 – 19 on consumers’ access to financial services. The Committee launched the consumers’ access to financial services inquiry on 9 November 2018. The report sets out the evidence that the Committee received in the course of … Continue Reading

PRA updates Solvency II remuneration policy statement for category 1 and 2 firms

All UK Solvency II firms must comply with Article 275 of the Solvency II Delegated Regulation (EU) 2015/35 in respect of their remuneration policies. The Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) asks UK Solvency II firms to complete a Remuneration Policy Statement to document remuneration policies and procedures. On 8 May 2019 the PRA published an updated … Continue Reading

Judiciary considers impact of Brexit on financial services disputes

On 7 May 2019, the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary published a speech by Sir Geoffrey Vos, Chancellor of the High Court, on the effect of Brexit on financial services disputes in London. In his view, Brexit will “probably not … have quite the dramatic effect that some people have suggested”. Key takeaways from the speech … Continue Reading

Prohibition on activities of tied agent fall outside scope of MiFID (ECJ)

The European Court of Justice (Court of Justice) has ruled that a temporary prohibition on the activities of a tied agent fall outside the scope of MiFID. Facts A request for a preliminary ruling from the Court of Justice was made in proceedings between Mr Antonio Pasquale Mastromartino and the Commissione Nazionale per le Società … Continue Reading

FCA research report on buying a mortgage without advice

On 8 May 2019, the FCA published a research report produced for it by Revealing Reality on buying a mortgage without advice. The report follows research that explored with recent mortgage applicants how appealing and how clear they found several existing execution-only disclosure documents. The research found execution-only customers generally understood that they were selecting … Continue Reading

Financial conduct regulation in a restless world

On 8 May 2019, the FCA published a speech by Christopher Woolard (Executive Director of Strategy and Competition, FCA) entitled Financial conduct regulation in a restless world. In his speech Mr Woolard discusses the FCA’s Business Plan and its priorities for the coming year. Key points in the speech include: from culture to fraud, market … Continue Reading