The European Commission has offered the securities industry an extra six months breathing space to prepare for the implementation of its controversial Directive On Markets In financial Instruments (MiFID).
The extension gives firms and markets a new deadline of 30 April 2007 to adapt their structures and procedures to the new requirements. Member States have also been given an additional six months until 30 October 2006, to write MiFID into national law, replacing the existing Investment Services Directive.
Meanwhile, the Commission is inviting comments on its third working document on implementing legislation for MiFID. While the first working document focused on transaction reporting plus exchange of information between competent authorities and the second on organisational requirements for investment firms, this document deals mainly with issues of market transparency, a key sticking point for the industry.
The document covers some of the proposed implementing measures, including client order handling rules and pre- and post-trade transparency rules for financial institutions executing securities trades internally and equivalent rules for regulated markets and ECNs.
Internal market and services commissioner Charlie McCreevy says: "This extension has been made to provide the finance industry with enough time to adequately address the operational and systems issues that arise from the need to implement MIFID."