Asset Management & Investment Funds: Irish Practice Developments - February 2018
Some approaching compliance deadlines
- 28 February 2018. Fitness & Probity - The Annual PCF Confirmation Return due date (for the year ending 31/12/17) for Investment Funds and Fund Service Providers (including AIFMs and UCITS management companies) is 28 February 2018. The Annual PCF Confirmation Return (which is made via the ONR system) involves a mandatory declaration that the CEO, or equivalent, has confirmed in writing that:
- the RFSP has brought the Standards to the attention of all PCFs
- the RFSP is satisfied on reasonable grounds that all PCFs comply with the Standards
- the written agreement of all PCFs to abide by the Standards has been obtained
- all necessary due diligence has occurred
- the RFSP will investigate any fitness and probity concerns, take appropriate action and notify the Central Bank of any action taken without delay.
- 25 May 2018. GDPR - the General Data Protection Regulation will come into force on 25 May 2018 and will introduce a sweeping new data protection regime.
- 26 June 2018. AML/CTF- ESA joint guidelines on simplified and enhanced due diligence. The Central Bank expects firms to comply with the ESA joint guidelines on simplified and enhanced due diligence by 26 June 2018.
- 1 July 2018. CP86 - Existing Fund Management Companies (UCITS ManCos, AIFMs, self-managed UCITS and internally managed AIFs) must comply with the new rules which derive from CP86 by 1 July 2018.
- 21 July 2018. MMF Regulation - The MMF Regulation must be implemented by EU member states by 21 July 2018. The MMF Regulation introduces new requirements for MMFs in particular, portfolio composition, valuation of assets, diversification, liquidity management and credit quality of investment instruments. Existing UCITS and AIF MMFs must comply with the new rules by 21 January 2019.
- 30 November 2018. Filing Annual accounts of Variable Capital Companies in CRO - The Companies (Accounting) Act 2017 obliges UCITS investment companies and AIF investment companies to file annual accounts for financial years commencing on or after 1 January 2017 with the CRO within eleven months of the relevant financial year end. By 30 November 2018 we will see the first such accounts being filed.
- 1 January 2019. Benchmarks Regulation - prospectuses of UCITS and of funds which are subject to the Prospectus Directive, which reference a benchmark and which have been approved prior to 1 January 2018, will need to be updated at the next update and in any event by no later than 1 January 2019 to include information on the benchmark.
The above list does not cover tax, FATCA or CRS filings, ad hoc filings (such as regulatory reports) or filings of annual accounts (and related documents which include annual FDI Return) and semi-annual accounts or other similar returns which deadlines will vary to reflect the particular entity's year end.
Central Bank Speech on the Importance of Diversity in Financial Services
Ed Sibley, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Ireland (Central Bank), Prudential Regulation, delivered a speech on 13 February 2018 on "The Importance of Diversity in Financial Services".
Central Bank Markets Update- Issue 2
The Central Bank published issue 2 of its Markets Update which includes the following:
- New procedures for submission of UCITS RMP documents. The Central Bank issued a letter on 19 January, outlining new procedures relating to submission of risk management process documents (RMPs) by UCITS investment funds. Draft RMPs will no longer need to be submitted to the Central Bank in advance of authorisation. Instead UCITS will submit a new Central Bank form confirming compliance with legislative and regulatory requirements with the RMP and other authorisation/ approval documentation.
European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA)
- ESMA consults on potential CFD and binary options measures to protect retail investors
- MiFID II/MiFIR data now available
- ESMA consults on CCP anti-procyclicality margin measures
- ESMA publishes first MiFID II position management controls for commodity derivatives
- ESMA publishes register of derivatives to be traded on-venue under MiFIR
- ESMA issues list of trading venues temporarily exempted from open access under MiFIR
- ESMA delays publication of double volume cap data
- ESMA raises concerns on fees charged by CRAs and Trade Repositories
- ESMA updates transparency calculations for MiFID II/MiFIR
International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO)
Central Bank Markets Update - Issue 3
Central Bank Markets Update Issue 4
The Central Bank published issue 4 of its Markets Update which includes the following:
- Central Bank communication to firms seeking authorisation in 2018
- Firms requiring authorisation should not delay in engaging with the Central Bank. A well-structured, well-prepared approach by firms is necessary. Such an approach combined with timely engagement should be part of any firm's Brexit planning. The Central Bank updated its FAQs to reflect this. There are also 2 new additional FAQs in relation to the impact of any transition period on firms' planning and the need for Irish authorised firms with activities in the UK to engage with UK authorities.
- Enhancements to the Regulated Disclosures Submission Process - Update. The Regulated Disclosures teams in the Central Bank are currently upgrading their document management and workflow system. This will affect submissions under the Prospectus, Transparency and Short Selling legislative regimes. The goal is to have minimal impact on stakeholders. However, "submission templates" containing details related to each submission will be required for most submission types. User Testing of the new system is underway. It is anticipated that the new system will go fully live in mid Q2 2018. An update on the new submission process will be provided at the Prospectus Regulations Stakeholder Meeting on 5 March 2017.
- Survey for the European Commission on the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive. KPMG has received a mandate from the EU Commission to carry out a study in relation to AIFMD – how it has worked in practice and to what extent its objectives have been met. An online survey launched by KPMG seeking input from stakeholders is open until 15 March.
European Systemic Risk Board (ESRB)
ESRB Recommendation on leverage and liquidity in investment funds
- ESMA publishes translations for Guidelines on MiFID II product governance requirements
- ESMA draws issuers’ attention to IAS requirements following introduction of new tax legislation in the US
- ESMA updates equity transparency calculations and tick sizes band assessment for MiFID II/ MiFIR
- ESMA publishes results of the second EU-wide CCP stress test
- ESMA updates Q&As on the Benchmarks Regulation
- ESMA updates its Q&A on short selling
- ESMA Updates Q&A on EMIR Implementation
- ESMA publishes the responses to its Consultation on position calculation under EMIR
- ESMA provides standards on supervisory cooperation for market abuse investigations
- ESMA updates its CSDR Q&As
- ESMA publishes the responses to its Consultation on proposed amendment to MiFID II RTS 1
- ESMA publishes 2018 Supervisory Convergence Work Programme
- ESMA updates its MiFID II Q&As on transparency and market structures
- ESMA issues conflict of interest guidelines for CCPs
- ESMA publishes 2018 Work Programme for CRAs, trade repositories and third country CCPs
- ESMA publishes risk assessment work programme for 2018
- ESAs warn consumers of risks in buying virtual currencies
- ESMA launches Interactive Single Rulebook
Improvements to Central Bank rules for Loan Originating Qualifying Investor AIFs
The Central Bank of Ireland (Central Bank) announced its intention to broaden the scope of what a Loan Originating Qualifying Investor AIF (LO-QIAIF) may invest in to include "investment in debt/credit instruments". This change will be effective from 7 March 2018 when the Central Bank will publish a revised AIF Rulebook. This will allow LO-QIAIFs to engage in broader credit related strategies. See our previous news alert for more detail.
Central Bank of Ireland
For more information please contact a member of the Asset Management & Investment Funds Team.
Date Published: 28 February 2018