Executive Director of ESMA sets out the regulator’s focus of work
The European Securities and Markets Authority is one of the three new European Supervisory Authorities, which have a financial supervisory remit across the EU in the fields of securities and markets, banking, and insurance and occupational pensions. ESMA replaced the Committee of European Securities Regulators at the start of 2011.
In a speech today the executive director of the ESMA, Verena Ross – who is frequently cited as one of the few UK individuals involved at a high level in the new EU system of financial supervision – listed the new regulator’s five priority areas:
1. Single rule book:
“…which will be a major focus going forward, with EMIR, Short-Selling Regulation, AIFMD, Prospectus Directive and others giving ESMA a significant work load in the formulation of technical standards.”
2. Regulatory arbitrage:
“…the important task of going beyond just formulating new rules to targeting more harmonised implementation”.
3. Investor protection:
“The ultimate objective of most of our work is to protect EU investors and consumers of financial products…At this point in time, we are working on ETFs and structured UCITS – an area that has a strong investor protection, but also financial stability dimension – and are planning to have guidelines ready for consultation by the end of this year.”
4. CRA supervision:
“ESMA is the only ESA that has direct and day-to-day supervisory responsibility for cross-European financial entities…the supervision of CRAs [credit rating agencies] is therefore one of our key priorities.”
5. Financial stability:
“…the significant focus on financial stability issues in ESMA’s work…Specifically our work on ETFs and highly automated trading are focused on the potential financial stability risks arising from new products and activities.”
We discuss the regulatory attitude to “highly automated trading” in this post.
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