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|11/06/2020||ESMA71-99-1342||Decision Short Selling Reporting Renewal Statement||COVID-19, Market Integrity, Press Releases, Short Selling||Press Release||PDF
|30/03/2012||2012/228||Draft technical standards on the Regulation (EU) No 236/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps||Short Selling||Technical Standards||PDF
|Regulation (EU) No 236/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 March on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps (the Regulation) requires ESMA to develop draft regulatory (RTS) and implementing technical standards (ITS) in relation to several provisions contained in Articles 9, 11, 12 and 16 of the Regulation. The draft RTS and ITS will be submitted to the European Commission by 31 March 2012. The Commission has three months to decide whether to endorse ESMAs draft technical standards. A further regulatory technical standard, on the method of calculation of the fall in value of a financial instrument required under Article 24(8) of the Regulation will be submitted together with the technical advice in the course of April 2012.|
|11/01/2016||2016/28||Emergency measure by the Greek HCMC under Section 1 of Chapter V of Regulation (EU) No 236/2012 on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps||Market Integrity, Short Selling||Opinion||PDF
Emergency measure by the Greek HCMC under Section 1 of Chapter V of Regulation (EU) No 236/2012 on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps
II.Previous measures adopted by the Hellenic Capital Market Commission (HCMC)
On the adverse events or developments
ESMA considers that adverse developments which constitute a serious threat to market confidence in Greece could be understood as having considerably decreased with the successful completion of the share capital increase of Attica bank as announced by that bank on the 30th December 2015. Attica Bank has been the last of the five banks to undertake the re-capitalisation process envisaged under Greek law. It represented less than 1 % of the total market capitalisation of the 5 re-capitalised banks before the Attica capital increase and less than 7% after the increase. It also stands for a very small fraction of the Greek banking sector. Not surprisingly, and unlike the other banks mentioned in paragraph 10 above, Attica Bank is not a significant supervised entity under the direct supervision of the ECB.
Although acknowledging that the successful and full conclusion of all the Greek banks’ re-capitalisation is important in order to safeguard the stability of the financial system as a whole and of the Greek capital market, as well as the protection of investors, ESMA considers that given that the capital increase of Attica Bank is agreed, priced, subscribed and publicly announced on the 30th of December 2015, the threat to the financial stability of the bank, and more widely to the financial stability of the Greek financial market, is much less acute than in December 2015.
ESMA notes that the trading of the newly issued shares further to the completed capital increase has not started yet and thus there is a risk of increased volatility in the relevant market and that the confidence in the concerned bank could be affected if price movements were extreme. However, the evolution of the stock price of Attica Bank during the last month does not point towards, on average, a significant downward pressure on the prices. The volatility observed on Attica Bank is relative to the currently volatile stock markets in the EU.
In the trading figures of Attica Bank shares since late November 2015, it is evident that the trading volumes have reduced progressively but the price of the stock has not suffered from a downward price spiral. Only in one occasion (10 December2015) the stock price fell more than 10% in a single session. In general, looking at the last 30 trading sessions, the price has increased by 37%. In the last 10 trading sessions, the price has moved in an overall range (counting intraday minimum and maximum values) of 13% around the average closing price of the period. In terms of closing prices, the maximum fluctuation has been -3,97% since 22 December (observed on January 7 2016). Putting these moves in the context of quite volatile EU stock markets, linked to the international market trends, it is questionable whether the volatility of the stock price of Attica Bank could be qualified as extreme or even high. Obviously, one could argue that the price has found a support thanks, among other things, to the existing ban on short sales. While it is extremely difficult to isolate the price effect of the short selling ban with current data, it is ESMA’s view that, all in all, the pricing history of the stock does not give the impression of a highly fragile situation.
The main risk related with extreme volatility in a re-capitalisation exercise arises when the issuance price of the new shares and the allotment of the volume to be subscribed is not yet complete. In that scenario, significant (downward) price movements can dis-incentivise the investors that were considering to subscribe to new shares or can affect the issuance price in a manner that the re-capitalisation (in terms of the effective amount of funds to be received by the bank) can be put at risk. Once the pricing and the subscription are firm, price moves have a much lower impact on the success prospects of a re-capitalisation. They mainly affect the willingness of the new investors to hold their new shares or to sell them when the new shares start to trade. But the effects of this process on the financial stability of the entity are much less direct than when the volatility scenario precedes the establishment of the price and of the allotment of the capital increase. The latter was the prevalent scenario in most of the other occasions in which the measures of the HCMC was extended and on which ESMA issued positive opinions in the past. In ESMA’s opinion, such scenarios should be distinguished from the case at hand.
The question of whether the risk of falling prices on Attica Bank shares (which has not yet been observed) would endanger the orderly functioning of the whole Greek financial market and its integrity is not evident to ESMA, due to the small size of this particular institution and to the fact that the only pending element is the formal admission to trading of the new shares.
On the appropriateness and proportionality of the proposed measure
ESMA considers that the renewal of the emergency measure limited to the shares of Attica Bank is not appropriate and proportionate to address the above mentioned potential threat stemming from the volatility of the price of the market of Attica Bank shares. Given that the share capital increase of Attica Bank is firm and definitive as well as publicly known, ESMA considers that the prohibition of short sales in the shares of Attica Bank admitted to trading on the Athens Exchange will only serve the purpose of assisting in reducing market volatility until the final admission of the new shares and the first days of their trading. While this may be a positive goal, ESMA notes that the situation of Attica Bank is very different from the ones of the other Greek banks both in terms of quantitative significance with respect to financial stability (much smaller in the case of Attica Bank) and in terms of the timing in the process of re-capitalisation (given that only the final listing of the new shares is pending, as opposed to the fixing of the issuance price and the allotment of the subscriptions).
ESMA is thus of the view that there are alternative tools and measures, including those provided by Article 23 of the Short Selling Regulation consisting in a short term restriction of short selling in case of a significant fall in price, to address extreme market volatility concerns, should this volatility materialise in the coming days and more specifically risks of a downward spiral of the price of Attica shares. Those measures would be in ESMA’s opinion more appropriate and proportionate to address the risks that would arise from that situation than a total ban on short sales.
On the duration of the proposed measure
Considering the above negative opinion on the appropriateness and proportionality of the measure, ESMA is not further assessing the duration of the proposed renewal.
|29/01/2013||2013/149||Emergency measure by the Greek HCMC under Section 1 of Chapter V of Regulation No 236/2012 on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps||Short Selling||Opinion||PDF
|30/04/2013||2013/542||Emergency measure by the Greek HCMC under Section 1 of Chapter V of Regulation No 236/2012 on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps||Short Selling, Market Integrity||Opinion||PDF
|05/05/2015||JC/2015/02||ESAs- main risks to EU financial market stability have intensified||Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors, Press Releases, Joint Committee||Press Release||PDF
|The Joint Committee of the European Supervisory Authorities (ESAs) published its fifth Report on Risks and Vulnerabilities in the EU Financial System. Overall, the report found that in the past six months, risks affecting the EU financial system have not changed in substance, but have further intensified. The EU’s economic performance improved slightly in early 2015, however the financial sector in general continues to be affected by a combination of factors such as low investment demand, economic uncertainty in the Eurozone and its neighbouring countries, a global economic slow-down and a low-interest rate environment. The main risks affecting the financial system remain broadly unchanged from those identified in the report’s previous edition, but have become more entrenched. The major risks include: • Low growth, low inflation, volatile asset prices and their consequences for financial entities; • Search for yield behaviour exacerbated by potential rebounds; • Deterioration in the conduct of business; and • Increased concern about IT risks and cyber-attacks. Despite these risks, a number of ongoing policy and regulatory initiatives are contributing to improving the stability and confidence in the financial system as well as facilitating additional funding channels to the real economy. These include ongoing regulatory reforms in the securities, banking and insurance sectors such as the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) and Regulation (MiFIR), the work on the implementation of the Capital Requirements Directive and Regulation (CRDIV/CRR), the work on the Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive (BRRD), the Deposit-Guarantee Schemes Directive (DGS) and the Solvency II Directive, as well as the European Commission’s plan for a Capital Markets Union (CMU). Steven Maijoor, Chair of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) and the current Chairman of the Joint Committee, said: “The Joint Committee has noted some improvement in overall market conditions; however, the recovery is not yet sustained and is exposed to risks related to broad macroeconomic conditions, in particular the low interest environment and resulting search-for-yield behaviour. Additionally regulators continue to have concerns about the operational risks generated by some financial institutions’ inappropriate business conduct, as well as those risks posed by inadequate management of IT risks. “However, recent regulatory initiatives across the banking, insurance and securities sectors, such as the Comprehensive Assessment, the insurance sector stress test and Solvency II along with, the ongoing MiFID, EMIR and PRIPS reforms are contributing to improving the stability and confidence in the EU financial system." Key Risks Identified The identified risks in the Report can be divided into macro risks to the EU financial system and economy and operational risks. Macro Risks The key macro risks identified relate to: 1. Risks from weak economic growth and low inflation environment, which include: • Adverse effect that low interest rates and uncertainties about the economic recovery have had on the outlook for the financial industry; • Higher valuation and market liquidity risk has raised concerns about the outlook for financial entities’ stability in the event of reversals in interest rates and asset prices; 2. Low profitability is motivating financial institutions and other investors to search for yield, which requires increased supervisory attention to the viability of business models, related restructuring activity and adequate management of risks. However, the promotion of sound and innovative business models for market-based funding structures could help to deliver additional stimulus; and 3. Some continued doubts on the comparability and consistency of banks’ calculations of risk weighted assets. Operational Risks The key operational risks relate to: 4. Business conduct risk remains a key concern with the Report recommending that supervisors should include misconduct costs in future stress tests where appropriate, while financial institutions should strengthening product oversight and governance frameworks. Further improvements in the regulatory framework and supervisory practices to address conduct risks are also warranted. In addition, further progress needs to be made on benchmark reforms where continuity and integrity remain a source of concern even if key panels remained stable; and 5. IT operational risk and cyber risk remain of great concern and pose challenges to the the safety and integrity of financial institutions. IT risk increased due to costs pressures, outsourcing, the need for additional capacities and a mounting number of cyber-attacks. The adequate integration of IT risk into overall risk management is a key policy for mitigation.|
|06/06/2013||2013/684||ESMA and the EBA publish final principles on benchmarks||Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors, Press Releases, Benchmarks||Press Release||PDF
|11/01/2013||2013/13||ESMA and the EBA take action to strengthen Euribor and benchmark rate-setting processes||Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors, Press Releases||Press Release||PDF
|02/06/2016||2016/743||ESMA assesses usefulness of distributed ledger technologies||Innovation and Products, Press Releases, Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors||Press Release||PDF
|30/09/2016||2016/1411||ESMA consults on future reporting rules for securities financing transactions||Post Trading, Press Releases, Securities Financing Transactions||Press Release||PDF
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has issued today a consultation paper on draft technical standards implementing the Securities Financing Transaction Regulation (SFTR), which aims to increase the transparency of shadow banking activities. Securities financing transactions (SFTs) are transactions where securities are used to borrow cash (or other higher investment-grade securities), or vice versa – this includes repurchase transactions, securities lending and sell/buy-back transactions.
|17/09/2012||2012/582||ESMA consults on market maker and primary dealer exemption for short selling||Short Selling, Press Releases||Press Release||PDF
|18/10/2018||ESMA71-99-1027||ESMA data analysis values EU derivatives market at €660 trillion with central clearing increasing significantly||Press Releases, Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors||Press Release||PDF
|19/02/2020||ESMA71-99-1284||ESMA finds continued high risks as financial markets remain highly volatile||Press Releases, Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors||Press Release||PDF
|15/04/2021||ESMA71-99-1651||ESMA highlights need for increased efforts on EMIR and SFTR data quality||Market data, Press Releases, Securities Financing Transactions, Supervisory convergence||Press Release||PDF
|14/02/2013||2013/215||ESMA issues first risk report on EU securities markets||Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors, Press Releases||Press Release||PDF
|01/02/2013||2013/167||ESMA issues guidelines on market-making and primary dealer exemptions||Short Selling, Press Releases||Press Release||PDF
|15/04/2020||ESMA71-99-1318||ESMA issues positive opinions on short selling bans by 5 jurisdictions||COVID-19, Market Integrity, Press Releases, Short Selling||Press Release||PDF
|17/03/2016||2016/366||ESMA maintains market risk indicator at highest level||Press Releases, Risk Analysis & Economics - Markets Infrastructure Investors||Press Release||PDF
|01/11/2012||2012/715||ESMA Opinion on emergency measure by Spanish CNMV under Section 1 of Chapter V of Regulation No. 236/2012 on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps||Short Selling||Opinion||PDF
|ESMA Opinion ESMA is adopting the following opinion on the notified measure, on the basis of Article 27(2) of Regulation 236/2012 on Short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps: On the adverse events or developmentsESMA considers that there are adverse developments which constitute a serious threat to financial stability and to market confidence in Spain. On the appropriateness and proportionality of the measure ESMA considers that the measure is appropriate and proportionate to address the above-mentioned threats that persist in Spain. On the duration of the measureESMA considers that the duration of the measure is justified and appreciates the CNMV’s statement in its notification of intent whereby the measure may be lifted during the period of enforcement of the measure, if considered necessary.|
|01/11/2012||2012/717||ESMA Opinion on emergency measure by the Greek HCMC under Section 1 of Chapter V of Regulation No. 236/2012 on short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps||Short Selling||Opinion||PDF
|ESMA Opinion ESMA is adopting the following opinion on the notified measure, on the basis of Article 27(2) of Regulation 236/2012 on Short selling and certain aspects of credit default swaps: On the adverse events or developmentsESMA considers that there are adverse developments which constitute a serious threat to financial stability and to market confidence in Greece. On the appropriateness and proportionality of the measure ESMA considers that the measure is appropriate and proportionate to address the above-mentioned threats that persist in Greece. On the duration of the measureESMA considers that the duration of the measure is justified and appreciates the HCMC’s statement in its notification of intent whereby the measure may be lifted during the period of enforcement of the measure, if considered necessary.|