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Date Ref. Title Section Type Download Info Summary Related Documents Translated versions
04/02/2020 ESMA32-67-613 Report on amendments to ESMA Guidelines on enforcement of financial information Final Report PDF
272.06 KB
20/12/2019 ESMA32-334-150 Report On the use of Alternative Performance Measures and on the compliance with ESMA’s APM Guidelines , Report PDF
800.36 KB
07/06/2019 ESMA32-60-474 Draft RTS amending Delegated Regulation (EU) 2018/815 on the updates of the taxonomy to be used for the ESEF , Final Report PDF
6.5 MB
27/03/2019 ESMA32-63-672 Enforcement and Regulatory Activities of European Accounting Enforcers in 2018 , Report PDF
1.29 MB
17/07/2018 ESMA31-62-1002 Final report on draft regulatory technical standards under the Prospectus Regulation Final Report PDF
1.46 MB
17/07/2018 ESMA32-51-522 ESMA response to the European Commission consultation on the Fitness Check on the EU Framework for public reporting by companies , Report PDF
625.18 KB
03/04/2018 ESMA32-63-424 Enforcement and Regulatory Activities of Accounting Enforcers in 2017 , Report PDF
955.19 KB
12/07/2017 ESMA32-67-284 Review of Fair Value Measurement in the IFRS financial statements , Report PDF
1.58 MB
10/04/2017 ESMA32-51-382 Enforcement and Regulatory Activities of Accounting Enforcers in 2016 Report PDF
657.13 KB

The report provides an overview of the activities of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) and the accounting enforcers in the European Economic Area (EEA), hereafter ‘European enforcers’, when examining compliance of financial information provided by issuers with IFRS in 2016. It also provides an overview of the main activities performed at European level, quantitative information on enforcement activities in Europe as well as ESMA’s contribution to the development of the single rulebook in the area of financial reporting. In addition, it also outlines ESMA’s activities for 2017 in the area of corporate reporting following its Supervisory Convergence Work Programme.

21/12/2016 2016/1668 2016-1668 ESMA feedback statement on ESEF , , Report PDF
6.98 MB
28/07/2016 2016/1170 Report on EEA prospectus activity in 2015 , Report PDF
674.63 KB
29/03/2016 2016/410 ESMA Report on Enforcement and Regulatory Activities of Accounting Enforcers in 2015 , , Report PDF
692.52 KB

Executive Summary

This report provides an overview of the activities of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) and the accounting enforcers in the European Economic Area (EEA), thereafter, ‘European enforcers’, when examining compliance of financial information provided by issuers listed on regulated markets with the applicable financial reporting framework in 2015. It also provides an overview of the main activities performed at European level, quantitative information on enforcement activities in Europe as well as ESMA’s contribution to the development of the single rule book in the area of financial reporting. In addition, it also outlines ESMA’s activities for 2016 in the area of corporate reporting following its Supervisory Convergence Work Programme.

Supervisory Convergence

Following the implementation of the ESMA Guidelines on enforcement of financial information (hereafter the Guidelines on enforcement), ESMA and European enforcers have further strengthened supervisory convergence in the area of enforcement of financial information. The Guidelines on enforcement significantly contributed to the alignment of supervisory approaches/procedures through the use of harmonised key concepts for examinations, of a common set of enforcement priorities, of common rules for enforcement actions and of a single set of criteria for identifying accounting matters for which coordination at European level within ESMA is needed. In the last area, the number of accounting issues discussed by the enforcers before taking enforcement decisions increased significantly (65 emerging issues in 2015 vs 47 in 2014) and contributed to enhancing supervisory convergence as enforcers should take into account the outcome of these discussions when taking decisions .

In 2015 ESMA and European enforcers evaluated the level of compliance with IFRS in the areas identified as common enforcement priorities for the 2014 annual financial statements on a sample of 189 issuers. This assessment resulted in 40 enforcement actions being taken on shortcomings in the disclosures of assumptions and judgements supporting the recognition of deferred tax assets arising from tax losses, when assessing control or classifying joint arrangements.

As in previous years, ESMA together with European enforcers identified and included in their supervisory practices a set of common enforcement priorities significant for European issuers when preparing their 2015 IFRS financial statements. These priorities include the impact of the financial markets’ conditions in IFRS financial statements, presentation of the statement of cash flows and related disclosures as well as the fair value measurement of non-financial assets and related disclosures. Specific references to some of the 2014 common priorities and to the new IFRS requirements, notably on IFRS 9 Financial Instruments and IFRS 15 Revenue from Contracts with Customers are also part of these priorities.

As a response to increased concerns in the markets, ESMA issued Guidelines on Alternative Performance Measures (hereafter the Guidelines on APMs) which are aimed at contributing to the publication of transparent, unbiased and comparable information by European issuers on their financial performance. The Guidelines on APMs will apply to APMs disclosed by issuers when publishing regulated information or persons responsible for the prospectus. European enforcers had to adapt their supervisory procedures and declare their compliance to these guidelines.

Also as part of the supervisory convergence activities, ESMA issued an Opinion on the application of the IFRS requirements on the cash contributions to Deposit Guarantee Schemes (DGS) in order to address the divergence in the application and enforcement in the accounting treatment applicable to these contributions and to prevent it from becoming widespread.

ESMA published a Statement referring to principles relevant for improving the quality of disclosures as a response to concerns expressed by users on the overload, lack of completeness or relevance of the information provided in the financial statements.

Finally, European enforcers examined the interim or annual financial statements of approximately 1,200 issuers representing an average examination rate of 20% of all IFRS issuers with securities listed on regulated markets, out of which 14% related to unlimited scope examinations and 6% to focused examinations. As a result of these activities, European enforcers took actions addressing material departures against 273 issuers, representing around 25% of the selected sample. The main deficiencies were identified in the areas of financial statements presentation, impairment of non-financial assets and accounting for financial instruments.

Single Rule Book

ESMA actively participated to the accounting standard setting process by providing European enforcers’ positions on all major new standards issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and by contributing to the discussions in the EFRAG Board and the Technical Expert Group (EFRAG TEG) meetings. Notably, ESMA provided specific input to the due process and endorsement advices on IFRS 9, in aspects related to investor protection and financial stability as well as on its interaction with IFRS 4 Insurance Contracts. In addition, ESMA also contributed to the consistent application of IFRS by engaging with the IASB and the IFRS Interpretations Committee (IFRS IC) when relevant issues were identified by enforcers and where a lack of clarity in IFRS could contribute to their divergent application.

In accordance with its mandate under the Transparency Directive, ESMA has submitted to the European Commission for endorsement the draft Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) on the European Electronic Access Point (EEAP) and published the consultation paper on the draft RTS on European Single Electronic Format (ESEF).

Next Steps

ESMA published its Supervisory Convergence Work Programme which covers, among other topics, the activities of accounting enforcers. In addition to the regular activities, ESMA envisages to start carrying out peer reviews on some of the ESMA Guidelines on enforcement, to publish statements on the implementation of new major IFRS and to develop supervisory briefings to align procedures of European enforcers when monitoring and enforcing the Guidelines on APMs and disclosures in the financial statements.

23/07/2015 2015/1136 EEA prospectus activity in 2014 , Final Report PDF
578.07 KB
30/06/2015 2015/1057 ESMA Guidelines on Alternative Performance Measures , Final Report PDF
484.57 KB
31/03/2015 2015/659 ESMA Report on Enforcement and Regulatory Activities of Accounting Enforcers in 2014 , Final Report PDF
633.7 KB
29/10/2014 2014/1278 Report on the equivalence of the Indian Accounting Standards , Final Report PDF
1.7 MB

This report fulfils the mandate received by the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) from the European Commission (EC) in February 2014 to provide it with an update on the level of convergence of the Indian Accounting Standards (Ind-AS)1 towards International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and the quality of application and enforcement of the Ind-AS, so that the EC can provide a progress report to the Council and the European Parliament (EP) in line with its obligations under Commission Regulation (EC) 1569/2007.

23/10/2014 2014/1277 ESMA Data on Prospectuses Approved and Passported – January 2014 to June 2014 , Final Report PDF
211.96 KB
The report compiles statistical data regarding the number of prospectuses approved and passported by National Competent Authorities in the period from January 2014 to June 2014 (with a quarterly disclosure).
23/10/2014 2014/1276 ESMA Data on Prospectuses Approved and Passported – January 2013 to December 2013 , Final Report PDF
285.12 KB
The report compiles statistical data regarding the number of prospectuses approved and passported by National Competent Authorities in the period from January 2013 to December 2013 (with a quarterly disclosure).
10/07/2014 2014/807 Final Report on ESMA Guidelines on enforcement of financial information , Final Report PDF
617.22 KB

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published its final Guidelines on the enforcement of financial information published by listed entities in the European Union (EU). The aim of the guidelines is to strengthen and promote greater supervisory convergence in existing enforcement practices amongst EU accounting enforcers. The Guidelines set out the principles to be followed by accounting enforcers throughout the enforcement process by defining the objectives, the characteristics of the enforcers, and some common elements in the enforcement process.

16/06/2014 2014/643 Review on the application of accounting requirements for business combinations in IFRS financial statements , Final Report PDF
751.04 KB

This report evaluates the consistency of application of key requirements of IFRS 3 - Business Combinations and how compliant and entity-specific IFRS 3 disclosures are in the 2012 annual IFRS financial statements of a sample of 56 issuers in the European Union (EU). It also includes other IFRS 3 issues identified as part of the enforcement experience of European national enforcers (European Enforcers) that participate in the European Enforcers Coordination Sessions (EECS).