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UK Launches Taskforce to Take the Lead in Climate Transition Plans

HM Treasury’s Transition Plan Taskforce aims to influence international standard setting and make the UK the world’s first net zero-aligned financial centre. By Paul A. Davies, Michael D. Green, Nicola Higgs, Anne Mainwaring, James Bee, and Dianne Bell On 25 April 2022, HM Treasury (HMT) announced the launch of the UK Transition Plan Taskforce (TPT) … Continue Reading

When Are CCOs on the Hook? FINRA Offers Guidance on CCO Liability

Guidance clarifies assessment of liability under Rule 3110, including designation as supervisor, application of reasonableness standard, and factors for and against charging compliance officials. By Marlon Q. Paz, John J. Sikora Jr., Stephen P. Wink, and Deric Behar On March 17, 2022, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) published Regulatory Notice 22-10 (Reg. Notice … Continue Reading

Wholesale Markets Review Consultation Response Aims for “Tailored” UK Approach

The consultation response heralds innovation-friendly reform to the UK wholesale capital markets regime. By Rob Moulton and Dianne Bell On 1 March 2022, HM Treasury published its response to the July 2021 consultation on the Wholesale Markets Review after considering the feedback received. The consultation response sets out changes that are expected to “liberate businesses … Continue Reading

UK Government Announces Fundamental Overhaul of the UK Prospectus Regime

The changes indicate a more dynamic and flexible UK prospectus regime with the FCA to play a central role through enhanced rule-making powers. By Chris Horton, James Inness, Anna Ngo, and Johannes Poon On 1 March 2022, the UK government (through HM Treasury (HMT)) announced the outcome of its consultation to reform the UK prospectus … Continue Reading

ESMA Consults on ESG-Related Amendments to Its Suitability Guidelines

Proposed changes seek to reflect the integration of sustainability considerations into MiFID II. By Nicola Higgs, Anne Mainwaring, Dianne Bell, and Charlotte Collins ESMA is consulting on updates to its Guidelines on the MiFID II suitability requirements, in light of upcoming changes that will embed sustainability considerations into the MiFID II framework. These changes will … Continue Reading

Top 5 Focus Areas for UK Equity Capital Markets in 2022

Broad reform to listing regimes, growing ESG scrutiny, and increasing retail participation in fundraisings are among the areas to watch. By Chris Horton, James Inness, Anna Ngo, and Johannes Poon Last year was memorable for UK equity capital markets (ECM). The IPO market was at its busiest since 2014, and we encountered innovative deal structures … Continue Reading

China Securities Regulatory Commission Proposes Major Expansion of Shanghai London Stock Connect Programme

The expansion would include Shenzhen Stock Exchange and potentially European stock exchanges, and would permit overseas issuers to raise capital in China through CDR listings. By Chris Horton, James Inness, Anna Ngo, Terris Tang, Cathy Yeung, and Johannes Poon On 17 December 2021, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) launched a consultation that proposes a … Continue Reading

FCA Confirms New Rules to Remove Barriers to Listing

The new rules aim to make London a more attractive listing venue for founder-led and other innovative IPO candidates. By Chris Horton, James Inness, Anna Ngo, and Johannes Poon On 2 December 2021, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a Policy Statement (PS21/22) confirming the following key changes to its listing rules that took … Continue Reading

UK Government Releases Roadmap to Sustainable Investing

The roadmap introduces sustainability disclosure requirements for UK companies and reveals further developments in relation to a UK Green Taxonomy. By David Berman, Paul A. Davies, Nicola Higgs, Michael D. Green, Anne Mainwaring, and James Bee On 18 October 2021, the UK government released a report titled “Greening Finance: Roadmap to Sustainable Investing” (the Roadmap), which is intended to encourage UK businesses and … Continue Reading

Court of Appeal Takes Expansive View of Regulated “Arranging” Activities

This decision shines a spotlight on the activities of unregulated introducers. By Rob Moulton, Nicola Higgs, and Charlotte Collins In a recent decision, the Court of Appeal upheld the FCA’s findings that unregulated introducers had been carrying on regulated activities without permission by persuading individuals to transfer their personal pensions into alternative investment products and … Continue Reading

FCA Proposes Enhanced Disclosures on Diversity and Inclusion for Listed Companies

Proposals reflect growing investor focus on the ESG performance of listed companies. By Chris Horton, James Inness, Rob Moulton, Anna Ngo, and Johannes Poon The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has launched a consultation setting out proposed changes to its Listing Rules (LRs) and Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules (DTRs). The proposals seek to: (i) … Continue Reading

IOSCO Consults on Regulation of ESG Data and Ratings Providers

By Paul A. Davies, Nicola Higgs, and Anne Mainwaring On 26 July 2021, the Board of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) published a consultation report (the Report) that proposes a set of recommendations to mitigate risks flowing from activities of ESG ratings and data products providers and to address some of the challenges … Continue Reading

UK to Adopt a New SPAC Listing Regime From 10 August 2021

The revised criteria allow UK-listed SPACs to avoid a suspension of their shares when announcing a de-SPAC deal. By Nicola Higgs, David Berman, Chris Horton, James Inness, Rob Moulton, Anna Ngo, and Charlotte Collins The UK, acting through the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), will implement a new SPAC listing regime from 10 August 2021. This follows a consultation launched in April … Continue Reading

HM Treasury Initiates Post-Brexit Review of the UK’s AML and CTF Regime

Recent publications come in light of UK’s “greater autonomy” in setting AML and CTF regulations following Brexit. By Jon Holland, Rob Moulton, and Jonathan Ritson-Candler Background to the review On 22 July 2021, HM Treasury published both a Call for Evidence on a review of the UK’s anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CTF) regulatory … Continue Reading

FCA Consults on Post-Brexit Changes to PRIIPs Regulation

UK rules will diverge from the much-criticised EU framework. By Nicola Higgs and Charlotte Collins On 20 July 2021, the FCA published a Consultation Paper (CP21/23) on amending the UK PRIIPs Regulation. The FCA has long held concerns about the PRIIPs framework, and pre-Brexit had been heavily involved in efforts to persuade EU lawmakers to … Continue Reading

FCA Seeks to Improve Quality of ESG Fund Disclosures

FCA has published guiding principles on the design, delivery, and disclosure of ESG and sustainable investment funds. By Nicola Higgs, David Berman, Paul Davies, Anne Mainwaring, and Charlotte Collins On 19 July 2021, the FCA published a letter sent to chairs of authorised fund managers, which sets out the regulator’s expectations regarding disclosures by funds … Continue Reading

ESMA Statement Warns on Payment for Order Flow

New ESMA guidance less strict than the established UK position on PFOF. By Rob Moulton, Axel Schiemann, Thomas Vogel, and Charlotte Collins On 13 July 2021, ESMA published a statement on payment for order flow (PFOF), the practice of brokers receiving payments from third parties for directing client order flow to these third parties as … Continue Reading

Private Bank Briefing – June 2021

By Rob Moulton, Nicola Higgs, Anne Mainwaring, and Charlotte Collins The latest edition of our Private Bank Briefing provides a roundup of legal and compliance issues impacting private banks and their clients from Q2 2021. In this edition, we cover sustainable finance developments, the regulators’ expectations regarding operational resilience and outsourcing, and the PRA’s plans … Continue Reading

FCA Seeks to Extend Climate-Related Disclosures for Listed Companies

The FCA is consulting on extending its rules to standard listed issuers. By Paul A. Davies, Chris Horton, James Inness, Anna Ngo, and Charlotte Collins On 22 June 2021, the FCA published a Consultation Paper (CP21/18) on extending the application of the existing climate-related disclosure requirements for commercial companies with a UK premium listing to a wider scope of listed … Continue Reading

FCA Proposes New Climate-Related Disclosure Regime

The FCA is proposing a disclosure regime for asset managers, life insurers, and pension providers. By Paul Davies, Nicola Higgs, Victoria Sander, David Berman, Anne Mainwaring, and Charlotte Collins On 22 June 2021, the FCA published a Consultation Paper (CP21/17) on introducing climate-related financial disclosure rules and guidance for asset managers, life insurers, and FCA-regulated … Continue Reading

Key Regulatory Developments in Hong Kong and Singapore: May 2020

Regulators seek to address “rolling bad apples”, bank culture reform, and cryptocurrency derivatives. By Farhana Sharmeen, Simon Hawkins, Kenneth Hui, and Marc Tan This blog post summarises key regulatory developments that took place in Hong Kong and Singapore in May 2020, as regulators in both jurisdictions issued regulatory pronouncements across a spectrum of topics — … Continue Reading
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