The Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) came into effect in 2016, replacing the Market Abuse Directive (MAD). MAR has the same overall goal as its predecessor - preventing market abuse and heightening the overall integrity of the EU & UK financial markets - but extends the scope to new markets, new platforms and new behaviours, and increases the disclosure and record keeping requirements.
The scope of MAR is based on the instruments being traded and includes all instruments that are traded on a regulated market, Multilateral Trading Facility (MTF), Organised Trading Facility (OTF), or certain derivative contracts based on these instruments. Equivalent but separate regulations are in place for UK trading (‘UK MAR’) and the EU (‘EU MAR’) – which one applies is dependent on the location of the market, not the trading firms.
MAR particularly focuses on three ‘core’ offenses – insider dealing, unlawful disclosure of inside information, and market manipulation. These requirements encompass disclosure obligations, including but not limited to:
The additional data and compliance monitoring required for firms to a) comply with basic disclosure and record keeping requirements and, more importantly, b) conduct the monitoring and surveillance to detect potential market abuse in an effective and timely manner, continues to be a challenge for the industry, and remains one of the regulator’s key issues.
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