MiFID II - Irish Developments

(i) Central Bank publishes updated MiFID Reporting Requirements

On 13 September 2018, the Central Bank of Ireland ("Central Bank") published a revised edition of its 'Reporting Requirements for Markets in Financial Instruments Directive Investment Firms' ("MiFID Reporting Requirements") publication.

The MiFID Reporting Requirements set out a non-exhaustive list of the regulatory reports that MiFID firms are required to submit to the Central Bank on a periodic basis. The requirement to provide regulatory reports emanate from legislative and supplementary requirements, and as advised in writing to firms by the Central Bank from time to time.

The new edition of the relevant MiFID Reporting Requirements is available here.

(ii) Markets in Financial Instruments Bill 2018

The Markets in Financial Instruments Bill 2018 (the "Bill") which was first presented to the Dáil on 11 April 2018, is currently making its way to the second stage in the Seanad. The Bill seeks to, among other things, provide for criminal sanctions and penalties for infringements outlined under the MiFID II Directive (2014/65/EU) (the "MiFID II Directive") via primary legislation.

As it is currently drafted, the Bill provides that if a person is guilty of an offence under certain provisions of the European Union (Markets in Financial Instruments) Regulations 2017 (MiFID II) (S.I. No. 375 of 2017) (the "MiFID II Regulations"), such as operating without authorisation, the person could be liable on conviction on indictment to a maximum penalty of €10 million, imprisonment for ten years or both. This is a continuation of the criminal sanctions regime that existed in Irish law under the MiFID I regime.

The Bill also seeks to make an amendment to the definition of "long term contract" under the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman Act 2017, as well as seeking to amend certain definitions provided for under the Credit Reporting Act 2013 and the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman Act 2017.

MiFID II - European Developments

(i) ESMA updates Q&A on Investor Protection

On 12 July 2018, ESMA published an updated version of its questions and answers publication "on MiFID II and MiFIR investor protection and intermediaries topics" ("Q&A on Investor Protection"). The updates to the Q&A on Investor Protection are as follows:

Question ID: Part 7 – Question 12 (as updated on 12 July 2018) which relates to whether the provision of research services on a free trial period is acceptable when provided in relation to portfolio management or advice on an independent basis; and

Question ID: Part 13 – Question 3 (as updated on 12 July 2018) which asks for practical examples of investment products belonging to different categories for the purposes of the Reverse Solicitation Regime as is set out in Article 42 of the MiFID II Directive and Article 46 of MiFIR.

A copy of the updated Q&A on Investor Protection can be accessed here.

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