Tag:Europe

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Europe: The Central Bank of Ireland Continues to Focus on Financial Stability
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The Central Bank of Ireland Introduces Macroprudential Measures to Irish-Authorised GBP-Denominated Liability Driven Investment Funds
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Europe: UK FCA’s Anti-Greenwashing Rule and Guidance Come Into Force on 31 May 2024
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Europe: ESMA publishes Guidelines on fund names using ESG or sustainability-related terms
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Europe: New Funds May Apply for UK Overseas Fund Regime Recognition from September 2024
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Europe: Research Cost Re-Bundling – Is the UK Going Back to the Future?
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Europe: Modernisation of the PRIIPs KID Considered by European Parliament
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Europe: Why Are Firms Currently Focusing on Derivatives Post Trade Reporting?
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EUROPE: ELTIF 2.0 Regime Goes Live in Ireland
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Europe: Agreement on EU ESG Ratings Regulation

Europe: The Central Bank of Ireland Continues to Focus on Financial Stability

By: Shane Geraghty, Michelle Lloyd, and Ruth Hennessy

The Central Bank of Ireland has announced this week that they will publish a feedback statement on their approach to macroprudential policy for investment funds, we expect in the coming months.

They issued a discussion paper on this topic late last year. The European Commission also released a targeted consultation on macroprudential policies for non-bank financial intermediaries on 22 May 2024.

The Central Bank’s announcement follows hot on the heels of its publication of a macroprudential policy framework for Irish-authorised GBP-denominated liability driven investment funds, as discussed here.

At the Central Bank’s recent Macroprudential Policy for Investment Funds Conference, the Governor of the Central Bank, Gabriel Makhlouf, indicated that a macroprudential framework for investment funds should not be a replication of the banking framework and should have:

  • A well-articulated set of objectives and principles; and
  • A framework tailored to the nature of the systemic risk from different fund cohorts – i.e. not a
    ‘one-size-fits-all approach’.

Governor Makhlouf noted that the objective is to ensure that this growing segment of the financial sector becomes more resilient and less likely to amplify adverse shocks.

The Central Bank of Ireland Introduces Macroprudential Measures to Irish-Authorised GBP-Denominated Liability Driven Investment Funds

By: Shane Geraghty, Michelle Lloyd, and Ruth Hennessy

The Central Bank of Ireland has introduced a macroprudential policy framework for Irish-authorised GBP-denominated liability driven investment funds (LDI Funds), to make them more resilient to shocks to UK interest rates.

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Europe: UK FCA’s Anti-Greenwashing Rule and Guidance Come Into Force on 31 May 2024

By: Philip Morgan, Andrew Massey, and Omega Modi

An anti-greenwashing rule comes into force in the UK on 31 May 2024. This is the first part of the FCA’s Sustainability Disclosure Requirements.

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Europe: ESMA publishes Guidelines on fund names using ESG or sustainability-related terms

By: Áine Ní Riain, Dr Philipp Riedl, and Ruth Hennessy.

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published its much anticipated Final Report: Guidelines on funds’ names using ESG or sustainability-related terms (Guidelines).

This follows a consultation on the subject between November 2022 and February 2023 and an update provided by ESMA last December.

Acknowledging the significant impact of fund names on investor decision-making, ESMA has determined that a fund with ESG- or sustainability-related terms in its name must apply at least 80% of its investments to meet environmental or social characteristics or sustainable investment objectives.

The Guidelines also apply exclusion criteria for certain terms in fund names:

  • “Environmental”, “impact” and “sustainability”- related terms will require compliance with the exclusions applicable to Paris-aligned Benchmarks; and
  • “Transition, “social” and “governance”- related terms will necessitate compliance with the exclusions applicable to Climate Transition Benchmarks.

Use of “sustainability”-related terms in fund names will require a commitment to “invest meaningfully” in sustainable investments. Similar use of “transition” or “impact” – related terms will require that the relevant fund’s investments used to meet the 80% threshold are on a clear and measurable path to transition or are made with the objective to generate a positive, measurable impact alongside a financial return.

The Guidelines will apply to all EU UCITS and EU AIFs, and it currently seems likely that they will also apply to non-EU funds marketed into the EU (this is a point on which we will be watching developments closely).

The Guidelines are expected to come into force in Q3 or Q4 2024, subject to completion of administrative formalities including a decision by national competent authorities on whether to apply them locally (which is generally expected). Existing funds will have an additional 3-month transition period before compliance becomes mandatory.

Europe: New Funds May Apply for UK Overseas Fund Regime Recognition from September 2024

By: Áine Ní Riain, Aoife Maguire, Gayle Bowen, and Philip Morgan

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has released updated information and, together with HM Treasury, a “roadmap,” on the UK’s Overseas Funds Regime (OFR). It intends to accept applications from new funds (i.e. those not in the Temporary Marketing Permissions Regime (TMPR)) from September 2024. This is a welcome development for managers of new EEA UCITS that are not currently able to access the UK retail market.

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Europe: Research Cost Re-Bundling – Is the UK Going Back to the Future?

By: Andrew Massey, Philip Morgan, and Omega Modi

The UK’s FCA has published consultation paper 24/7: Payment optionality for investment research. It proposes a new, more flexible, way to charge third-party investment research to clients.

The new payment option would sit alongside the two existing options under which research costs are either paid by firms from their own resources or charged to clients through a research payment account. The latter approach has not been popular because of its operational complexities, so research has been an out-of-pocket expense for many UK asset managers.

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Europe: Modernisation of the PRIIPs KID Considered by European Parliament

By: Áine Ní Riain and Shane Geraghty

On 20 March 2024, the European Parliament’s Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) voted in favour of draft modernisation measures for the PRIIPs Key Information Document (KID).

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Europe: Why Are Firms Currently Focusing on Derivatives Post Trade Reporting?

By: Ron Feldman and Philipp Riedl

Deficiencies in compliance with derivatives post trade reporting rules have recently triggered regulator fines. Fin-FSA in Finland fined a pension fund €90K and the Central Bank of Ireland imposed the first fine on an investment fund, €192K. Although the fines are reasonably modest, they have sharpened industry focus on this issue.

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EUROPE: ELTIF 2.0 Regime Goes Live in Ireland

By: Gayle Bowen and Shane Geraghty

After much anticipation, the new ELTIF 2.0 regime has gone live in Ireland. The Central Bank has, this morning, issued a feedback statement outlining how its new regime will work. Key points include the following:

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Europe: Agreement on EU ESG Ratings Regulation

By: Hilger von Livonius and Philipp Riedl

On 5 February 2024, the EU Council and the EU Parliament agreed on a provisional text for the ESG Ratings Regulation (the Regulation).

Under the Regulation, in-scope EU providers of ESG ratings will require a licence from, and be supervised by, European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA).

In-scope ESG ratings will provide an opinion on a company’s or a financial instrument’s sustainability profile, by assessing its exposure to sustainability risk and its impact on society and the environment.

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