The European Parliament, the Greek EU Presidency (on behalf of the Council) and the European Commission will meet, on 14 January in Strasbourg, to negotiate the comprehensive financial markets reform package known as MiFID II-MiFIR(1). These talks are in the final phase now and the parties hope to reach a political agreement as soon as possible.To recall, they already tried - but failed - to agree on this vast reform aimed at providing better regulation of financial markets in late December 2013 (see Europolitics 4777).aThe parties had found a common ground on the sensitive points, sources said, adding that at the last moment the Commission opposed a compromise on a technical but important aspect: the financial products excluded from the scope of the reform, and more specifically certain derivative contracts on commodities. Accordingly, no deal was reached.
The outstanding sensitive issues include the limitation of speculation on commodity derivatives, the settlement of financial contracts (the phase that comes after their negotiation), and access by foreign financial services companies to the EU market.
Overall, this reform aims to 1. further regulate the structure of financial markets and their transparency; 2. apply a more stringent framework to commodity derivatives markets and algorithmic and high-frequency trading (technologies that have increased transaction speed); and 3. strengthen the protection of investors.
At the timeEuropolitics went to press, Parliament, the Greek Presidency and...