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12 January 2012

This week in "Brussels"

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Articles from 22 December 2011 - 12 January 2012


ECON Committee published draft report on CRD IV/CRR
Rapporteur Karas proposed to rely only on the buffer guide and the variables developed by the ESRB, as freedom in choosing variables would inevitably lead to regulatory arbitrage. In this respect, the treatment of systemically important financial institutions is still to be discussed.  View Article
Danish Presidency published compromise proposals on CRD IV
The Danish Presidency has published compromise texts for CRD IV, comprising a Directive and a Regulation.  View Article
Basel III liquidity standard and strategy for assessing implementation of standards endorsed by Group of Governors and Heads of Supervision
The Group of Governors and Heads of Supervision (GHOS) met on 8 January 2012. The main items of discussion were the Basel Committee's proposals on the Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) and its strategy for assessing implementation of the Basel regulatory framework more broadly.   View Article
Commission launched consultation on its Green Paper on card internet and mobile payments
A secure and transparent integrated payments environment throughout the EU could create more efficient, modern and safer means of payments – for the benefits of consumers, merchants and payment providers.   View Article
EBA: Work Programme 2012
In line with the regulation establishing the European Banking Authority, the annual work programme describes and summarises the main objectives and deliverables of the EBA in the forthcoming year, derived from the tasks specified in the regulation and from the relevant EU banking sector legislation.  View Article
EBA publishes Guidelines on AMA extensions and changes
The European Banking Authority (EBA) has published its 'Guidelines on AMA extensions and changes (GL45)'. The aim is to harmonise processes regarding the supervisory approval of such changes and to assist institutions using the Advanced Measurement Approach (AMA) to develop their AMA models further.  View Article
BIS: Statistics on payment, clearing and settlement systems in the CPSS countries - Figures for 2010
The Bank for International Settlements published its annual publication (CPSS Publications No 99), providing data on payments, and payment, clearing and settlement systems in the CPSS countries.  View Article
IMF Working Paper: 'Next Generation System-Wide Liquidity Stress-Testing'
The fact that liquidity risk turned out to be one of the key threats to financial stability throughout the recent financial crisis has lead to reconsideration, with a re-emerging focus on liquidity in industry as well as regulatory circles.  View Article
VoxEU: Stop coddling Europe's banks
Throughout the European debt soap opera, Europe's leaders have expressed their willingness to “do whatever it takes” to restore stability and save the euro. This column argues that, too often, policymakers have in fact been “doing whatever it takes” to serve the banks.  View Article
BBA: Liquidity is not a dry subject
This weekend the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision – the regulator of regulators, and specifically the setter of global standards for bank capital – met to discuss the technical but vital issue of liquid assets.  View Article
FN: A rough guide to surviving the great deleveraging of 2012
As European banks stumble into 2012 they are facing a monumental challenge to meet demanding new targets for reducing the leverage that had fuelled their outsize returns of the decade before the financial crisis. It won't be pretty.  View Article
EurActiv: Alarm bells ring as banks pull out of eastern Europe
Eastern and central European countries face disappointment with capitalism on a par with their previous disillusion with communism, as western European banks continue to pull back from investment in the territory.  View Article
VoxEU: Cross-border banking and national supervision – is there a conflict?
This column explores whether a supranational financial supervisor might be able to alleviate the pressures on national regulators and governments, particularly in Europe, and what barriers lie in the way.  View Article
BIS: Financial stability and risk disclosure
Keynote address by Mr Jaime Caruana, General Manager of the Bank for International Settlements, to the FSB Roundtable on risk disclosure.  View Article
Enrico Perotti: How to stop the fire spreading in Europe’s banks
In this FT Opinion, Perotti draws a comparison with the Great Fire of London in 1666, and says that waiting for Basel III is not enough. Among still-hot ashes, history should guide planners to rebuild the city of finance wisely.  View Article
EPC: SEPA gaining ground with corporates
The European Payments Council reports that for the first time, the gtnews Payments Survey 2011 asked its global corporate readers to rank Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) instruments among regularly-used methods to make and receive payments.   View Article
EPC: 1 February 2014 deadline for compliance of Euro Credit Transfers and Direct Debits with forthcoming SEPA Regulation
The European Payments Council (EPC) published its deadline for compliance of Euro SCT and SDD.  View Article
Japan's Financial Services Agency and Bank of Japan comment on Volcker rule proposal
The letter highlights two key concerns, one of which is in relation to the negative effect that the proposed restrictions of the Volcker rule would have on Japanese Government Bonds trading.   View Article


ESMA extends transitional period for use of non-EU credit ratings
ESMA has decided to extend until 30 April 2012 the initial transitional period of three months for credit ratings issued outside the European Union.   View Article
ISDA updates OTC derivatives market analysis: despite increase in notionals, over 50 per cent of IRS market is cleared
The International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) published its analysis of the over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives market based on June 30 2011 statistics.  View Article
MiFID II main issues and AMF priorities
The AMF will make a series of proposals aimed at adapting the draft Directive to include measures that foster greater transparency. European markets must once again become the meeting place for issuers and investors.  View Article
MiFID II: EuropeanIssuers’ comments
EuropeanIssuers welcomes the extension of transparency requirements to all financial instruments traded on organised venues, however remains concerned about possible lack of transparency in two areas: the size of the business evading pre-trade transparency; the quality of post-trade transparency.  View Article
EBF position on the review of the MiFID
EBF demands more signposting at Level 1 to ensure that important matters of principle are clear. Present uncertainty as to the timeline to implement any new changes needs to be addressed, and the banking sector should be given time to adjust efficiently.  View Article
Publication of responses to ESMA's consultation on possible delegated acts concerning the Prospectus Directive
The purpose of this consultation document from ESMA was to seek comments on the technical advice that ESMA proposes to give to the European Commission on a number of possible delegated acts.  View Article
ICMA response to ESMA's technical advice on possible delegated acts concerning the Prospectus Directive as amended by Directive 2010/73/EU
ICMA is responding in relation to its primary market constituency that lead-manages syndicated debt securities issues throughout Europe. This constituency deliberates principally through ICMA's Primary Market Practices Sub-committee.  View Article
FT: Europe set to block DB-NYSE tie-up
European competition officials have recommended blocking the tie-up between Deutsche Börse and NYSE Euronext, setting in motion what could be weeks of frantic lobbying to salvage the deal.  View Article
NYSE Euronext statement in response to media reports on the possible merger with Deutsche Börse
NYSE Euronext clarified that it has not yet received any official decision by the European Commission regarding the requested merger of both companies. The Commission has announced that it will make its final ruling on whether to clear the proposed merger by February 9, 2012.   View Article


EC urges ‘innovative’ insurance industry to apply gender ruling fairly
The European Commission has adopted guidelines to help the insurance industry implement unisex pricing, after the Court of Justice of the European Union controversially ruled that different premiums for men and women constitute sex discrimination.  View Article

Asset Management

AMF updates its policy on collective investment schemes
The Autorité des Marchés Financiers has given a commitment to update and publish its policy on collective investment schemes regularly, in order to ensure that asset management companies and collective investment scheme distributors are familiar with it.  View Article
AMF publishes instructions, completing transposition of UCITS IV Directive
The AMF instructions governing the authorisation and operation of UCITS, non-UCITS and real estate collective investment schemes have been amended and now incorporate all the new measures introduced into French law.  View Article
Reuters: Hedge funds lock horns with IMF on Greek debt
Hedge funds are taking on the International Monetary Fund over its plan to slash Greece's towering debt burden.  View Article
IMA: Developed market equity funds continue to see outflows
The Investment Management Association published its monthly fund statistics for November 2011.  View Article
IPE: French fund considers cross-border vehicle, but only if IORP amended
French pension fund provider, AG2R La Mondiale, has said it would be willing to launch a cross-border pensions vehicle, but only if the European Commission provides some guaranties on the revised IORP Directive.  View Article
IPE: ECB data show decline in assets for pension funds, insurance companies
Pension funds and insurance companies in Europe saw assets under management fall sharply in the third quarter of last year, with total asset value dropping by more than €13 billion over the period, according to new data from the European Central Bank.  View Article
IPE: Poland contravening investment rules for pension funds
According to the European Court of Justice, Poland is in breach of the freedom of movement of capital for maintaining a 5 per cent cap on foreign investments set up for second-pillar pension funds.  View Article
IPE: Hungarian government accuses pension funds of fraudulent practices
Hungary's government has accused the country's pension funds of adopting fraudulent practices prior to the funded pension system's abolition last year.  View Article
ALFI's response to EIOPA's call for advice on the revision of the IORP Directive
On October 25 2011, EIOPA invited market participants and occupational pensions stakeholders to participate in the second consultation on the revision of the IORP Directive. The Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry published its response.  View Article
EVCA warns proposed new pension fund regulation could destroy investment in long-term growth
In a response submitted to the EIOPA on the proposed reform of the European pension fund system, EVCA warns of serious and significant unintended consequences, including a flight by pension funds from long-term growth asset classes such as infrastructure and private equity.  View Article
IOPS working paper: Comparative Information Provided by Pension Supervisory Authorities
This paper examines the role pension supervisory authorities can play in providing information. The way in which comparative information on costs, investment performance and comparative service data is presented by IOPS member authorities is outlined, and some lessons learnt are documented.  View Article
IOPS published its 2011 Annual Report
2011 has proved to be a highly "practical" year for IOPS. After launching the IOPS Toolkit for Risk-based Supervision in 2010, the IOPS has held a series of very successful workshops demonstrating how this innovative technique is used in practice.  View Article

Corporate Governance/Accounting

IASB: CMAC meeting summary
At the Capital Markets Advisory Committee (CMAC, formerly the Analyst Representative Group) meeting, held in London on 12 October 2012, the XBRL and the Thomson Reuters data model, risk free rate of return, financial instruments: impairment and transition disclosures were discussed.   View Article
FASB January update including update on international convergence activities
The FASB published its January summary. This summary is meant to update investors on standard-setting activities that may impact the companies they follow (all industry sectors, healthcare, financial institutions).   View Article
FEE commented on EFRAG's draft comment letter on the IASB exposure draft Investment Entities
In its comment letter to EFRAG, FEE agrees with the IASB's proposal for an exception to the consolidation principle on the basis that the measurement of investees controlled by an investment entity at fair value produces more decision-useful information than consolidation.  View Article
FEE commented on the IASB exposure draft Investment Entities
FEE provided its comments on the IASB exposure draft Investment Entities. FEE has also contributed to the EFRAG consultation process by submitting on 5 January 2012 the FEE comments on EFRAG's draft comment letter issued on 29 September 2011.  View Article
FASB: Deferral of certain aspects of comprehensive income accounting
The FASB issued ASU No 2011-12, 'Comprehensive Income (Topic 220): Deferral of the Effective Date for Amendments to the Presentation of Reclassifications of Items Out of Accumulated Other Comprehensive Income in ASU No 2011-05'.  View Article
EFRAG and UK ASB: Discussion Paper on income tax
The EFRAG and the UK ASB of the FRC published a Discussion Paper, 'Improving the Financial Reporting of Income Tax', resulting from a project developed by EFRAG and the UK ASB jointly. The Discussion Paper is open for comment until 29 June, 2012.  View Article
ECIIA's special edition on European Governance
ECIIA's special edition on European Governance highlights the important news that arose from its recent international conference in Madrid. By its title, "In Search of Stability", this publication captures the debate and the comments of key speakers from a wide governance arena.   View Article
IAASB focuses on going concern assumption and adequacy of disclosures
In light of the current economic conditions, the IAASB reminds auditors of their important responsibilities under the ISAs and that the appropriateness of management's use of the going concern assumption is a matter to be considered on every audit engagement.  View Article
IFAC: IAASB's feedback statement on the evolving nature of financial reporting
The IAASB released a Feedback Statement on the responses to its January 2011 Discussion Paper, 'The Evolving Nature of Financial Reporting: Disclosure and Its Audit Implications'.   View Article

Financial Services Policy

Danish Presidency published its work programme
In financial services, the Danish Presidency will focus its work on: CRD IV, EMIR, crisis management framework, MiFID and MAR. The Presidency will in general assign particular priority to improving the protection of European consumers in relation to the financial sector.  View Article
VoxEU: Is a European Tobin tax likely to be efficient?
Rather than give a case for or against the tax, this column by Donato Masciandaro and Francesco Passarelli looks at what the realistic options are, and asks whether they will be better for Europe or worse.  View Article
EDHEC-Risk Institute draws French Government's attention to the inadvisability of imposing a Tobin tax in France
EDHEC-Risk Institute's recommendations are structured around theoretical evidence on financial transaction taxation, empirical evidence on its effects, as well as the implementation challenges of such a tax.  View Article
Oxera reviews the European Commission’s economic impact assessment of the proposed financial transaction tax
This review focuses on the principal elements of the Commission's economic impact assessment and considers selected unintended consequences not included in that assessment. It concludes that the FTT will have a negative impact on the EU economy.   View Article
EurActiv: Cameron vows to veto financial tax
British Prime Minister, David Cameron, said yesterday (8 January) he would veto a European-wide financial transaction tax unless it was adopted globally, deepening a confrontation with France and Germany.  View Article
FTAdviser: RDR - Preparing for the unknown
Although the Retail Distribution Review has been more than five years in the planning and the making, the industry faces a number of uncertainties when it comes to the implementation of the RDR in 2013.  View Article
2012 - The final RDR countdown
MoneyMarketing's Natalie Holt looks ahead at a vital 12 months, as the RDR moment of truth looms for advisers. The countdown now begins in earnest.  View Article


Asia in 2012: IMF says resilient, but at risk from euro downturn
Despite the prevailing global uncertainty, Asia has until now proven to be very resilient. It has boasted strong domestic demand, low unemployment, and factories working at near-full capacity. While credit growth has slowed from the torrid pace of early 2011, it remains robust in most economies.   View Article

Financial Services Month in Brussels - Report

December 2011 Financial Services Month in Brussels
Graham Bishop's Personal Overview of December 2011. Looking back through the history of the EU reinforced his belief that the EU is at a historical turning point – something that may last for quite some time rather than be a particular day.   View Article

© Graham Bishop

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