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September 2011

The ISE Response to the ESMA Consultation on its guidelines on systems and controls in a highly automated trading environment

On 30 September 2011, the Irish Stock Exchange responded to a consultation paper issued by the European Securities and Market Authority (ESMA) on its guidelines on systems and controls in a highly automated trading environment for trading platforms, investment firms and competent authorities (link to consultation). The guidelines focus on organisational requirements which are relevant in a highly automated trading environment for electronic trading systems to ensure fair and orderly trading, and also to prevent market abuse (in particular market manipulation). They also cover requirements in relation to sponsored access and direct market access. The ISE broadly supports the guidelines but our response also highlights a number of areas which we believe should be clarified or possibly amended.

July 2011

ISE Response to the ESMA consultation on the Prospectus Directive

On 15 July 2011, the Irish Stock Exchange responded to a consultation paper issued by the European Securities and Market Authority (ESMA) on its technical advice on possible delegated acts concerning the Prospectus Directive as amended by the Directive 2010/73/EC.  The consultation paper outlines a number of positive developments, such as the proposal to introduce a proportionate disclosure regime for rights issues.  However, we have a number of fundamental concerns regarding the proposals for final terms and summaries which we believe are likely to result in increased costs and administration for issuers without delivering corresponding benefits for investors. 

February 2011

ISE Response to the European Commission’s consultation on the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive

On 2 February 2011, the Irish Stock Exchange responded to the European Commission’s consultation on the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive. The consultation covers a number of important topics including developments in market structures, pre- and post-trade transparency, data consolidation and investor protection and the provision of investment services. The ISE response contains references to the consultation response published by the Federation of European Securities Exchanges (FESE) which can be accessed by clicking here .

September 2010

ISE Response to the CESR Consultation on the Development of Pan-European Access to Financial Information Disclosed by Listed Companies

On 24 September 2010, the Irish Stock Exchange responded to the CESR consultation on the Development of Pan-European Access to Financial Information Disclosed by Listed Companies (Link to Consultation ). The Transparency Directive requires issuers to disclose 'regulated information' to the market and, in addition, to file it with the national storage mechanism (the Officially Appointed Mechanism or 'OAM'). In Ireland, the ISE is the designated OAM. The consultation paper sets out proposals to enhance the capabilities of the OAM network as well as integrate the network across Europe. A key point made in the ISE response is that it is very important for CESR to have a detailed understanding of what the end-users actually want/need from the OAM network. It is not clear to us from the consultation paper that sufficient consideration has been given to this area. The ISE believes that a lot more analysis needs to be done to demonstrate that the benefits of enhancing the OAM network for end users justify the significant developmental costs that are likely to be incurred.

August 2010

ISE Response to the European Commission's Consultation on Modernising the Transparency Directive

On 23 August 2010, the Irish Stock Exchange responded to the European Commission's consultation on Modernising the Transparency Directive (Link to Consultation ). A key point made in our response is that thesolution to addressing the issues around the attractiveness of regulated markets to small listed companies is far broader than amending EU securities legislation, such as the Transparency Directive. A pan-European strategy with a clear vision for the smaller listed company segment is required, taking into consideration the key areas of enterprise, finance and macroeconomic policy, as well as the necessary infrastructure reports for these types of companies. In our view, the proposed amendments to the Transparency Directive are unlikely to achieve significant cost savings for issuers bearing in mind the balance to be struck between reducing costs/administration for issuers and transparency for investors. Our response addresses questions on specific topics, such as the disclosure of major shareholdings and possible steps to further harmonise certain requirements in theTransparencyDirective.

July 2010

ISE Response to the European Commission's Consultation on the Market Abuse Directive

On 23 July 2010, the ISE submitted a response to the European Commission on the questions raised in its consultation paper on the Market Abuse Directive (Link to Consultation ). The ISE considers that the proposals contained in the consultation paper should generally improve the effectiveness of the market abuse framework and therefore enhance market integrity and increase investor protection. Whereas we are in favour of applying the secondary market provisions of the Directive, regarding insider dealing and market manipulation, to financial instruments on MTFs in Europe, we believe that the Directive's disclosure obligations on issuers should not be included. The ISE response sets out our views on the Commission's proposals on: (a) extending the scope of the Directive; (b) increasing the effectiveness of enforcement powers and sanctions; and (c) progressing towards having a single rule book across the EU.

ISE response to the European Commission's Consultation on Short Selling

On 9 July 2010, the ISE submitted a response to the European Commission on the questions raised in its consultation paper on Short Selling (Link to Consultation ). The ISE beleives that short selling plays an important role in financial markets and contributes to enhanced liquidity and price formation. We support the introduction of short selling disclosure measures where they are targeted at specific financial instruments where a significant risk for market mischief arises. However, as outlined in our response, we consider the measures proposed in the consultation paper on uncovered short sales to be excessive and believe that some of them would be unworkable in practice.

June 2010

Response to the Committee of European Securities Regulators' consultation on the MiFID Review (Equity Markets)

On 4 June 2010, the ISE submitted a response to CESR on the questions raised in its consultation paper on the MiFID Review (Equity Markets). The ISE generally supports the initiatives proposed by CESR to enhance pre and post trade transparency in equity markets.

March 2010

Response to the Financial Reporting Council's Consultation on the Revised UK Corporate Governance Code

On 5 March 2010, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted a response to the Consultation on the Revised UK Corporate Governance Code (the 'Code') published by the Financial Reporting Council. The ISE welcomes the proposed structure and content revisions to the Code which it believes will facilitate listed companies in delivering to the spirit, as well as the letter, of the Code.

September 2009

Response to the Committee of European Securities Regulators' consultation on the proposal for a pan-European short selling disclosure regime

On 30 September 2009, the ISE submitted a response to CESR on its proposal for a pan-European short selling disclosure regime. In principle, we support the harmonisation of requirements in this area across the EU. However, we have general concern that the analysis contained in the consultation paper is not sufficiently detailed, and that further analysis of short-selling practices in Europe needs to be undertaken before the proposals can be properly assessed.

Response to the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment on the draft Regulations transposing Directive 2006/43/EC on statutory audits of annual accounts and consolidated accounts

On 4 September 2009, the ISE submitted views to the DETE regarding the draft Regulations which transpose Directive 2006/43/EC on statutory audits of annual accounts and consolidated accounts. The Exchange’sresponse is primarily focussed on those provisions of the Directive that apply to entities whose securities are admitted to trading on its regulated market. We support the transposition approach and, in particular, the availing of key name Member State options in relation to audit committees. However, we are concerned that the exemption for third country auditors of non-EU open ended funds has not been included in the draft Regulations and we strongly recommend that this important exemption be included in the final Regulations.

August 2009

Response to the IOSCO Technical Committee consultation report on Disclosure Principles for public offerings and listings of Asset Backed Securities

On 10 August 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted views to IOSCO on its disclosure principles for asset backed securities. As a leader in the listing of asset backed securities in Europe, the Exchange provides a number of insights, particularly in light of the recent financial crisis, on how the IOSCO disclosure principles may be improved to better reflect the nature of the asset backed securities and markets.

July 2009

Response to the Committee of European Securities Regulators' consultation on MiFID complex and non-complex financial instruments for the purposes of the Directive's appropriateness requirements

On 17 July 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted views to the Committee of European Securities Regulators regarding the classification of certain financial instruments between ‘complex’ and ‘non-complex’ under the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive. The Exchange is of the view that shares admitted to trading on a multi-lateral trading facility, such as IEX, should be treated as ‘non-complex’ financial instruments.

June 2009

ISE Response to the European Commission's call for evidence on the Market Abuse Directive (2003/6/EC)

On 10 June 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted its views on a number of issues raised by the European Commission regarding the operation of the Market Abuse Directive including the scope of the market abuse regime, the disclosure of inside information and issues regarding market manipulation. The Exchange generally supports the Commission’s initiative to improve the effectiveness of the market abuse framework and simplify and reduce the regulatory burdens that companies face when complying with the Market Abuse Directive.

Response to the Financial Regulator on the proposed new disclosure regime for contracts for difference (CfDs)

On 5 June 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted a response to the Financial Regulator on its consultation regarding a proposed new disclosure regime for contracts for difference. The Exchange supports the introduction of a CFD disclosure regime for the Irish market, for CFD positions in Main Market and IEX companies.

May 2009

Response to the Financial Reporting Council in the UK regarding its consultation on the effectiveness of the Combined Code

On 29 May 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted a response to the Financial Reporting Council in the UK regarding its consultation on the effectiveness of the Combined Code (which applies to Irish incorporated companies listed on the Irish Stock Exchange). The key points highlighted in the ISE response relate to:

 

1. the importance of clarity regarding the roles of the chairman, the chief executive and non-executive directors and the relationships between them;

 

2. the need for more meaningful disclosures by listed companies when they have chosen not to comply with a particular Code provision; and

 

3. the need for additional voluntary disclosure by listed companies on how they have complied with the Code’s provisions.

Response to the Financial Regulator on its consultation regarding the disclosure of grants of security over shares under the Market Abuse Directive

On 22 May 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted a response to the Financial Regulator on its consultation regarding the disclosure of grants of security over shares under the Market Abuse Directive. The Exchange is of the view that the granting of security over shares by ‘persons discharging managerial responsibilities’ should be disclosed to the market and that the relevant legislation should be amended to achieve this.

April 2009

Response to the European Commission consultation on the Report of the High Level Group on Financial Supervision in the European Union

On 9 April 2009, theIrish Stock Exchangesubmitted its views to the European Commission on a number of the recommendations contained in the de Larosiere Report which relate to securities markets supervision.

Response to the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment on the transposition of Directive 2007/36/EC on the exercise of certain rights of shareholders in listed companies

On 9 April 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange submitted a response to the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment regarding the transposition of the Shareholders Rights Directive in Ireland. The Exchange is of the view that the approach to implementation of the Directive should be to build on the existing well-developed framework under the Companies Acts and seek to ensure an appropriate balance between enhanced shareholder rights and additional burdens on listed companies.

Response to the Committee of European Securities Regulators' consultation paper on proposals for the Review Panel Work Plan

On 7 April 2009, theIrish Stock Exchangesubmitted a response to a consultation by the Committee of European Securities Regulators (‘CESR’) regardingthe work plan of the CESR Review Panel for ensuring consistent implementation of EU Directives including the Prospectus Directive, UCITS, Market Abuse Directive, Takeover Directive and Markets in Financial Instruments Directive.

March 2009

Response to the European Commission's consultation on the review of the Prospectus Directive (2003/71/EC)

On 10 March 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange responded to the European Commission’s consultation on the review of the Prospectus Directive (PD). The Exchange generally welcomes the work undertaken by the Commission to reduce administrative burdens on issuers and supports many of the proposals put forward by the Commission.

January 2009

Response to the European Commission's consultation on Hedge Funds

On 30 January 2009, the Irish Stock Exchange responded to the European Commission’s consultation paper on hedge funds. The Exchange is of the view that a sufficient case has not been presented for further regulation of hedge funds.

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