The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) recently published its first consultation paper on the implementation of the new European Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (MiFID II) in the UK. MiFID was originally introduced in 2007 and the revised regime aims to strengthen investor protection, increase market resilience, reduce systemic risks and increase the overall efficiency and transparency of financial markets.
A significant part of MiFID II takes the form of EU regulations that are directly applicable in the UK without the need for changes to domestic law or regulation. The FCA’s first consultation paper focuses on areas where it has sufficient certainty about the MiFID II legislation to be able to make proposals for implementation in the UK and seeks views on changes to the FCA Handbook.
The proposals mainly cover changes to the trading of financial instruments. These include issues affecting trading venues, transparency of trading and algorithmic and high frequency trading. There are also proposals covering changes to the scope of the application of the FCA’s Principles for Businesses and the supervision of the new Data Reporting Service Providers category of firms.
There are a range of matters on MiFID II, including conduct of business issues, where there is currently insufficient certainty to enable proposals on implementation to be finalised. The FCA plans to publish at least one further consultation paper covering these outstanding matters during the first half of next year.
The closing date for responses to this consultation is 8 March 2016.
1. The implementation of MiFID II is currently set for 3 January 2017. Discussions are taking place between the European Commission, European Parliament and Council of the European Union about a possible overall delay in the implementation of MiFID II to January 2018. The European Commission has not yet made a legislative proposal to introduce a delay.
2. On 1 April 2013 the FCA became responsible for the conduct supervision of all regulated financial firms and the prudential supervision of those not supervised by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA).
3. The FCA has an overarching strategic objective of ensuring the relevant markets function well. To support this it has three operational objectives: to secure an appropriate degree of protection for consumers; to protect and enhance the integrity of the UK financial system; and to promote effective competition in the interests of consumers.
Source : FCA