Global Financial Regulatory Blog

Insights and commentary on financial regulatory issues and developments impacting business and innovation in the US, Europe, Asia, and across the world.

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Proposed changes to UK insolvency laws aim to support companies under pressure due to COVID-19. By Rob Moulton and Anna Lewis-Martinez On 28 March 2020, the UK government announced a number of reforms to UK insolvency laws: The temporary suspension of existing wrongful trading rules retrospectively from 1 March 2020 for three months, so that directors can continue to trade without the threat of personal liability. The implementation of plans to amend the insolvency regime…
The draft RTS introduce new, potentially more onerous obligations on the administrators of all categories of benchmarks. By Nicola Higgs and Becky Critchley On 9 March 2020, ESMA published a consultation paper (CP) on draft Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) under the EU Benchmarks Regulation (BMR). The CP covers governance arrangements, methodologies, reporting of infringements, mandatory administration of critical benchmarks, and non-significant benchmarks, each being provisions of the BMR that were not originally subject to a…
In three recent Client Alerts, Latham & Watkins lawyers examine how government measures to fight COVID-19 may affect French M&A transactions, key questions for French listed companies and high yield issuers, and how companies can respond to the impact on their current French law contracts. By Latham’s Mergers & Acquisitions, Capital Markets, and Litigation & Trial Practices Impact of COVID-19 on French M&A Transactions On March 16, 2020, President Emmanuel Macron announced the…
Market participants must treat clients fairly and exercise care when recommending potentially volatile or illiquid products. By Simon Hawkins and Kenneth Y.F. Hui In response to ongoing volatility in local and international markets caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, on 27 March 2020, the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) published two circulars reminding fund industry participants and SFC-licensed intermediaries of their obligations to safeguard client interests. The first circular, directed at fund managers,…
UK regulators announce a further package of measures to ease the burden on issuers. By Chris Horton, James Inness, Rob Moulton, Koushik Prasad, Connor Cahalane, and Charlotte Collins In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, UK regulators have published further measures affecting issuers, to try to preserve the flow of information to investors and support the continued functioning of the UK’s capital markets. However, the FCA has also noted that issuers…
ESMA, BaFin, and FCA have provided guidelines on firms’ obligation to record client telephone calls. By Rob Moulton and Axel Schiemann Remote working raises uncertainties in various regulated areas as it dramatically changes institutions’ day-to-day business. In particular, institutions are confronted with practical and technical difficulties regarding client-related requirements such as the obligation to tape telephone conversations with clients — which employees working remotely may not be able to do because they lack access to…
The FCA, the Bank of England, and members of the Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates have stated that firms should still plan for the transition away from LIBOR at the end of 2021. By Becky Critchley, Jonathan Ritson-Candler, and Anna Lewis-Martinez On 25 March 2020, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), after discussions with the Bank of England and the Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates, published a statement confirming that…
The FCA has clarified which people working in regulated financial services firms will meet the definition of a “key worker”. By Rob Moulton On 19 March 2020, the UK government published guidance setting out which “key workers” will be permitted special status as regards to educational provision for their children. (It is possible that this definition may start to be used for other purposes.) Then on 20 March, the FCA set out guidance, which…
The three US federal banking agencies have taken additional steps to enable the financial system to continue functioning during the pandemic. By Alan W. Avery and Pia Naib The three US federal banking agencies — the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Federal Reserve), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) — have taken additional measures to protect the public and private sectors from…