Commission Summary of Contributions on EU Regulatory Framework

The European Commission has published a summary of contributions received to the ‘Call for Evidence’ on an EU regulatory framework for financial services. The consultation closed on January 31, 2016.

The summary reports who responded and gives an overview of the responses. Overall, the Commission claims that stakeholders did not dispute the reforms of recent years and many responses expressed support of the new rules. Many replies also related to unnecessary regulatory constraints on financing, proportionality, excessive compliance costs and complexity, reporting and disclosure obligations, and overlaps, duplications, and inconsistencies.

Permanent Representatives Committee Approves Delay to New Securities Market Rules

On May 18, 2016, the Permanent Representatives Committee approved, on behalf of the Council of the EU, an agreement with the European Parliament for a one-year delay to the dates of transposition and application of the MIFID II Directive (2014/65/EU) and the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (Regulation 600/2014) (“MIFIR”). This was announced in a press release of the Council of Europe.

Under the new approach the deadline for member states to transpose MIFID II into national legislation will be July 3, 2017, and the date of application of both MIFID II and MIFIR will be January 3, 2018.

EBA Publishes Decision on Unsolicited Credit Assessments

On May 17, 2016, the European Banking Authority published a decision confirming that the unsolicited credit assessments of certain external credit assessment institutions (“ECIAs”) do not differ in quality from their solicited credit assessments with regard to the Capital Requirements Regulation (Regulation 575/2013).

The published decision annexes 22 ECIAs and confirms that in respect of those listed, the quality of the unsolicited credit assessments does not differ from the solicited credit assessments.

The decision will enter into force 20 days after publication in the Official Journal of the EU.

ECB Publishes Public Consultation

The European Central Bank (“ECB”) has published a Public Consultation on a draft Addendum to the ECB Guide on options and discretions available in Union law.

The consultation document sets out the ECB’s approach to the exercise of options and discretions provided for in Regulation 575/2013 (on prudential requirements for credit institutions and investment firms) and Directive 2013/36/EU (on access to the activity of credit institutions and the prudential supervision of credit institutions and investments firms).

This publication is the second phase of the ECB’s project on options and discretions.

Rating Agency Developments

On May 18, 2016, Fitch issued a report entitled: Fitch: NSFR Rule Could Constrain Trust Banks’ Liquidity Position. Report.

On May 16, 2016, Fitch issued a report entitled: Fitch: Confidence in US Marketplace Lending ABS Takes a Hit. Report.

On May 12, 2016, Fitch issued a report entitled: Fitch Updates U.S. RMBS Seasoned and Re-Performing Loan Criteria. Report.

On May 12, 2016, Fitch issued a report entitled: Fitch Updates U.S. RMBS Loan Loss Model Criteria. Report.

On May 12, 2016, Fitch issued a report entitled: Fitch Publishes Revised EETC Criteria: Allows for Ratings in the ‘AA’ Category. Report.

Agencies Invite Comment on Proposed Rule to Prohibit Incentive-Based Pay that Encourages Inappropriate Risk-Taking in Financial Institutions

On May 16, 2016, six federal agencies – the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, the National Credit Union Administration, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Securities and Exchange Commission – requested public comments on proposed rule that would “prohibit incentive-based compensation arrangements that encourage inappropriate risks at covered financial institutions.”  Comments must be submitted by July 22, 2016. Release.

U.S. Treasury Department Issues White Paper on Online Marketplace Lending Industry

On May 10, 2016, the Department of the Treasury issued a white paper on online marketplace lending that maps the current market landscape, reviews industry insights and offers policy proposals for the road ahead.  Based on approximately 100 responses from online marketplace lenders, financial institutions, investors and other key industry figures, the Treasury, in consultation with the CFPB, FDIC, Federal Reserve Board, FTC, OCC, SBA and SEC, made several notable recommendations and observations.

The white paper explores policies that would expand regulatory oversight, including standardized representations and warranties in securitizations, pricing methodology standards, the implementation of a registry for tracking data on transactions and the reporting of loan-level performance, among others.  In addition, the Treasury mentions potential cybersecurity threats, anti-money laundering, the uneven protections and regulations in place for small business borrowers and the growth of the mortgage and auto loan markets as some of the emerging trends to monitor.  The Treasury is also considering the role of federal agencies in regulating these areas, including the formation of an interagency working group for online market place lending.  Press ReleaseWhite Paper.

The SEC is Seeking Comment on a Joint Agency Proposed Rule Relating to Incentive-based Compensation Arrangements

On May 6, 2016, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Treasury (OCC), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (Board), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued and sought comment on a joint proposed rule to implement section 956 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act) relating to the prohibition on and the disclosure of information of incentive-based compensation arrangements.  The deadline for comments is July 22, 2016.  Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Request for Comment.

U.S. Treasury Announces Customer Due Diligence Final Rule for Financial Institutions

On May 5, 2016, the U.S. Department of the Treasury announced a Customer Due Diligence (CDD) Final Rule that requires financial institutions to conduct certain diligence to verify personal information of beneficial owners of legal entity customers.  The final rule under the Bank Secrecy Act was published in the Federal Register on May 11, 2016 and becomes effective July 11, 2016.  Press ReleaseFinal Rule.