This report warns that rushed proposals from the European Commission to regulate financial markets risk damaging both the City of London and the entire EU financial sector. Flawed transparency proposals and the risk of creating unnecessary red tape means the EU needs to stop and take the time to get the proposals right. The Committee has scrutinised the Commission's proposals for a Directive and a Regulation in Markets in Financial Instruments (known as MiFID II). The new regulatory framework applies to a wide range of investment services such as global investment banks trading complex securities, fund managers investing pension funds, stock-broking firms and small high street financial advisers providing financial advice to the general public. This important and far-reaching proposal seeks to meet the G20 commitment to tackle the less regulated and more opaque parts ('dark pools') of the financial system, and to enable regulators to regulate, traders to trade, and consumers to use such products, with confidence.Proposals on third country access would effectively create a 'fortress Europe' - forcing countries such as the USA and China out of affected markets, to the detriment of EU consumers. An unsophisticated, one-size-fits-all approach that ignores the sensitivity of information before a trade is made (pre-trade transparency) not only risks damaging liquidity and reducing competition, but could also have a serious effect on market innovation. The new category of Organised Trading Facilities (OTFs), aimed at ensuring all organised trading is conducted on regulated venues, risks creating red tape.
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