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Date Ref. Title Section Type Download Info Summary Related Documents Translated versions
13/10/2016 2016 IFRS Press Release ESMA and IFRS® Foundation strengthen cooperation , , Press Release PDF
213.42 KB
01/07/2016 2016/1066 ESMA appoints new Securities and Markets Stakeholder Group , Press Release PDF
156.76 KB

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published the new list of members of its Securities and Markets Stakeholder Group (SMSG) following its approval by its Board of Supervisors. The selected individuals begin a 2½ year term on 1 July 2016 and will replace the group whose mandate expired on 30 June 2016.

The new SMSG will be composed of 30 individuals drawn from across 13 Member States and representing ESMA’s key stakeholder constituencies – financial market participants (10), employee representatives (2), consumer representatives (6), users of financial services (3), small and medium sized enterprises (2) and academics (7). The new SMSG will feature 27 new members. A number of the incoming members have served in the previous SMSG.

The SMSG was established according to ESMA’s founding regulation and facilitates consultation between ESMA and its key financial market stakeholders on its work. The SMSG provides ESMA with opinions and advice on its policy work and must be consulted on technical standards and guidelines and recommendations. Additionally, it can inform ESMA of any inconsistent application of European Union law as well as inconsistent supervisory practices in Member States.

19/07/2016 2016/1138 ESMA advises on extension of funds passport to 12 non-EU countries Press Release PDF
148.97 KB
22/07/2016 2016/1161 Comment letter to the IFRS Interpretations Committee’s tentative agenda decision on IAS 32 , Letter PDF
87.16 KB
26/07/2016 2016/1164 Letter to the Commissioner Dombrovskis on MAR ITS , Letter PDF
205.33 KB
02/02/2016 2016/138 ESMA updates on supervisory work on closet index tracking , Press Release PDF
120.08 KB

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published a Statement providing details of its work on closet index tracking funds.

Closet indexing, also known as index hugging, refers to the practice of fund managers claiming to manage portfolios actively when in reality the fund stays close to a benchmark. ESMA is concerned the practice may harm investors as they are not receiving the service or risk/return profile they expect based on the fund’s disclosure documents while potentially paying higher fees compared to those typically charged for passive management.

ESMA conducted research on a sample of 2,600 funds for the period 2012-2014 to determine whether it could find any indication of closet indexing at an EU-wide level. Quantitative metrics, such as the percentage of a UCITS’ portfolio that does not coincide with the underlying equity benchmark, indicated between 5 and 15% of UCITS equity funds could potentially be closet indexers. ESMA then reviewed the investor disclosure documents of the funds concerned, to see how they described their management strategy, and found they tended to confirm the quantitative analysis results.

12/10/2016 2016/1465 Comment letter to IASB regarding the proposed IASB’s ED ‘Definition of a Business and Accounting for Previously Held Interests’ , Letter PDF
288.41 KB
12/10/2016 2016/1466 Comment letter to EFRAG regarding the proposed IASB’s ED ‘Definition of a Business and Accounting for Previously Held Interests’ , Letter PDF
287.78 KB
01/02/2016 2016/172 Comment Letter to IASB on ED ‘Applying IFRS 9 Financial Instruments with IFRS 4 Insurance Contracts’ Letter PDF
79.41 KB
01/02/2016 2016/173 Comment Letter to EFRAG on ED ‘Applying IFRS 9 Financial Instruments with IFRS 4 Insurance Contracts’ Letter PDF
81.2 KB
16/02/2016 2016/279 CL to EFRAG SPS Cash flow issues Letter PDF
52.99 KB
16/02/2016 2016/280 CL to the IASB ED Improvements IFRS Cycle Letter PDF
52.52 KB
16/02/2016 2016/281 CL to EFRAG on IASB ED Improvements IFRS Cycle Letter PDF
53.25 KB
16/02/2016 2016/282 CL to the IASB ED Amendments to IAS 40 Letter PDF
47.37 KB
16/02/2016 2016/283 CL to EFRAG on IASB ED Amendments to IAS 40 Letter PDF
47.96 KB
15/02/2016 2016/291 ESMA consults on implementation of the Benchmarks Regulation , , Press Release PDF
118.88 KB

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has today published a Discussion Paper (DP) regarding the technical implementation of the incoming Benchmarks Regulation (BR). ESMA is seeking stakeholder’s input to inform its future proposals on draft Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) and Technical Advice (TA) to the European Commission.

Benchmarks are used in financial markets as a reference to price financial instruments and to measure performance of investment funds, as well as being an important element of many financial contracts and their integrity is critical to financial markets and to investors in particular. The BR’s objective is to improve the governance and control over the benchmark process, thereby ensuring their reliability and protecting users. The changes aim to:

  • improve the quality of the input data and methodologies used by benchmark administrators;
  • ensure that benchmark contributors provide adequate data and are subject to proper controls; and
  • ensure the supervision and viability of critical benchmarks.

Steven Maijoor, ESMA Chair, said:

“The Benchmark Regulation, once implemented, will ensure the accuracy, robustness and integrity of benchmarks and the benchmark setting process by clarifying the behaviours and standards expected of administrators and contributors. These requirements will ensure that benchmarks are produced in a transparent and reliable manner and so contribute to well-functioning and stable markets, and investor protection.

“ESMA, in preparing for its work on regulatory technical standards and technical advice, is keen to ensure that all affected stakeholders have their views heard on this important topic and we hope that all interested parties will take this opportunity to contribute.”

The DP is seeking stakeholder’s feedback in the following areas:

  • definition of benchmarks;
  • requirements for the benchmark oversight function;
  • requirements for the benchmark input data;
  • governance and control requirements for supervised benchmark contributors;
  • authorisation and registration of an administrator; and
  • transparency requirements regarding the benchmark methodology.

The exact date when the Benchmarks Regulation will enter into force is still unknown as it has not yet been published in the Official Journal of the EU.

Next steps

ESMA will hold an open hearing on the DP on 29 February 2016 in Paris. It will use the responses to its DP to develop detailed implementing measures on which it will publish a follow-up consultation in Q3 2016.

19/02/2016 2016/302 CL to IFRS PS on materiality Letter PDF
72.14 KB
19/02/2016 2016/303 CL to EFRAG IFRS PS on materiality Letter PDF
69.77 KB
18/01/2016 2016/34 ESMA CL to EFRAG on IFRS IC DI Uncertain tax positions Letter PDF
30.35 KB
18/01/2016 2016/35 ESMA CL to the IFRS IC DI Uncertain tax positions Letter PDF
30.28 KB