Fund Management

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published its technical advice to the European Commission (EC) on Sustainable Finance initiatives to support the EC’s Sustainability Action Plan in the areas of investment services and investment funds.

The two final reports contain technical advice to the EC on the integration of sustainability risks and factors, relating to environmental, social and good governance considerations with regards to investment firms and investment funds, into the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (MiFID II) (investment services), the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD) and the Undertakings in Collective Investment in Transferable Securities (UCITS) Directive (investment funds).

ESMA ran a public consultation and hearing on its technical proposals and conducted a cost-benefit-analysis and has taken into account the opinion of the Securities Markets Stakeholder Group (SMSG).

ESMA, to ensure consistency, has developed its final report in cooperation with the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA), which has received a similar mandate regarding Solvency II and the Insurance Distribution Directive (IDD).

Next steps

ESMA’s initial consultation contained a separate paper on guidelines for disclosure requirements applicable to credit ratings, including the consideration of environmental, social and governance factors. The final report of this paper is expected to be published by the end of July.

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published the responses received to its Consultation on draft guidelines on liquidity stress test for investment funds.

To view the responses, please click the button below.

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has issued today its first annual report on sanctions imposed by national competent authorities (NCAs) under the Undertakings for Collective Investments in Transferable Securities (UCITS) Directive.

Under the UCITS Directive, NCAs can impose sanctions for the infringements of its provisions, such as on management companies, depositary as well as information provided to investors.

The report provides an aggregated overview of the penalties and measures issued under the UCITS Directive for 2016/2017, based on data submitted to ESMA by NCAs.

Background

The UCITS Directive is a detailed, harmonised framework for investment funds that can be sold to retail investors throughout the EU. This means that funds authorised in one Member State can be marketed in another Member State using a passporting mechanism. There are more than 29,000 UCITS funds in the EU which represent over €8 trillion of assets under management. 

Steven Maijoor, the Chair of the European Securities and Markets Authority, has delivered the keynote speech at today's Better Finance 10th Anniversary Conference in Bucharest.

The speech focused on the costs and performance of retail investment products, drawing on ESMA's first annual costs and performance report on retail investment products.

​Key points in the speech were:

“In the case of retail investment funds, costs are fairly constant and not as variable as gross returns. Hence, investors take an extra hit in case of overall lower gross returns.

and

“The new ESMA Q&As adopt a broad definition of ‘benchmark referencing’ UCITS funds. The obligation for a wider range of funds to show past performance of the benchmark should allow investors to better evaluate investment choices of active funds against passive funds, and reduce the possibilities of adopting closet indexing strategies.”

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has today updated its Questions and Answers on the application of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD).

ESMA has added two new Q&As on calculation of leverage under AIFMD.

The Q&As provides clarification on:

  • the treatment of short-term interest rate futures for the purposes of AIFMD leverage exposure calculations according to the gross and commitment methods;
  • the required frequency of the calculation of leverage by an AIFM managing an EU AIF which employs leverage.

The purpose of this Q&A document is to promote common supervisory approaches and practices in the application of the AIFMD and its implementing measures.