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ESMA publishes final rules to ensure integrity of EU financial benchmarks

30 March 2017

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published its final report containing the draft regulatory and implementing technical standards (RTS/ITS) under the Benchmarks Regulation (BMR). These contain the detailed rules to implement the new European regulatory framework aimed at ensuring the accuracy and integrity of benchmarks across the European Union.

The draft RTS/ITS set out the behaviours and standards expected of administrators and contributors, and will ensure that financial benchmarks are produced in a transparent and reliable manner. The draft standards include provisions ensuring:

  • the full process of provision of a benchmark is checked by a new oversight function that administrators have to establish;
  • the potential manipulation of benchmarks is minimised, through new rules regarding the methodology of calculation and the contribution of input data;
  • that conflicts of interest of administrators and contributors are properly managed; and
  • a level playing field across different Member States for the authorisation and registration of benchmark’s administrators.

 

Steven Maijoor, ESMA Chair, said:

“The Benchmarks Regulation 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.

“The draft standards published today establish a common regulatory framework under which benchmarks are provided, produced and used, which will help to restore trust both in benchmarks and financial markets.”