By Rob Moulton and James Inness

After lengthy consultation ESMA has published a detailed Final Report setting out its views on how to improve MAR. The ball is now firmly in the Commission’s court as to the next steps.

Latham & Watkins has produced a detailed summary for clients.

The key takeaways are as follows:

  • ESMA is keen to provide detailed and somewhat inflexible looking, guidance on managing market abuse risk when pre-hedging.
  • ESMA suggests that the Commission do not show any flexibility on the application of the MAR Market Soundings Regime. ESMA thinks that it is a mandatory process, and suggests amending MAR to introduce sanctions for those who do not follow it, with only minor administrative alterations to the burdens of compliance.
  • ESMA does not propose that the Commission makes changes to the definition of inside information, but does suggest (and, in fact, ESMA offers to draft) guidance on what the existing definition means in some areas.

The market is likely to see lobbying aimed at the Commission on all of the above points.

See the full Client Alert here.