The House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee (the Committee) has published its sixth report of session 2015-16.

The sixth report covers documents considered by the Committee on 21 October 2015, the proposed EU Regulation on indices used as benchmarks in financial instruments and financial contracts (the Benchmark Regulation) being among them (page 45 of the report).

The report refers to a letter from the Economic Secretary to the Treasury (Harriett Baldwin) which provides an update on developments on the Benchmark Regulation. In particular the letter notes that:

  • proportionality remains an active area of discussion in the ongoing trilogue negotiations;
  • the parties in the trilogue held on 22 September agreed a three-tier categorisation framework with diminishing restrictions applying to those benchmarks that are in the less significant categories;
  • with regards to the third country regime for benchmarks administered outside the EU, both the European Parliament and Council of the EU texts agree that alternative mechanisms beyond simple equivalence are required to ensure a workable third-country regime, given the widespread use of third-country benchmarks in EU markets; and
  • the UK Government has argued that demonstrable compliance with the International Organization of Securities Commissions’ principles should form the foundation of the third-country regime.

View House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee Sixth Report of Session 2015-16, 30 October 2015