EFAMA agrees in principle with many of ESMA’s suggested approaches in their consultation on guidelines on certain aspects of the MIFID II appropriateness and execution-only requirements.
Distribution & Client Disclosures
EFAMA welcomes the ESAs’ official approval of the revised PRIIPs RTS and is now awaiting the Commission’s endorsement to have the RTS approved by the European co-legislators.
Originally, the Commission had intended to endorse the revised RTS by Q1 2020. With less than nine months remaining until the 31 December 2021 implementation deadline, there is now simply not enough time for fund managers and other product manufacturers to properly implement the envisaged wide-ranging changes. We explain why in more detail below.
A flawed review process not tackling the heart of the issue
EFAMA has always made it clear that a revision of the PRIIPs Regulatory Technical Standard (RTS) falls short of conducting a proper Level 1 review. A review that is explicitly required by the Level 1 Regulation and is overdue for more than one year.
Andreas Stepnitzka, EFAMA Deputy Director, Regulatory Policy, comments:
EFAMA provided high-level comments to the Commission’s consultation on the potential review of the Directive on Distance Marketing of Consumer Financial Services.
We agree with the Commission’s interpretation that the Directive is seen as a “safety net” for financial services not already subject to product-specific legislation. Fund and asset managers are already subject to various, more stringent and detailed sectoral legislations, such as (but not limited to) UCITS, AIFMD and MiFID as well as the (more recent) Cross-Border Fund Distribution Directives.
EFAMA and several other financial industry associations, raised concerns in response to a consultation conducted by the European Commission on planned changes to the Packaged Retail and Insurance-based Investment Products (PRIIPs) framework.
The unexpected delay to the adoption of the revised PRIIPs RTS cuts the implementation period for the industry by more than two months. This leaves PRIIPs manufacturers and distributors with a too short period instead of the original timeframe of 12 months to implement the new rules.
Funds face unique challenges in performing intermediary oversight, and especially so because of MiFID II requirements, changing regulatory landscapes, and the absence of an industry agreed-upon standard between funds and their distribution channels. To help address these challenges, a dedicated working group developed a uniform due diligence questionnaire (DDQ) that will serve as the standard for investment funds (UCITS and AIFs) in performing onboarding and ongoing oversight of distribution channels.