ESMA’s report reveals only €1.8m in sanctions under MiFID II imposed in 2019

Maria Nikolova

The report shows only half of member states imposed such sanctions with most of these not including a fine.

MiFID II implementation likely to be set back even further

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s securities markets’ regulator, today published its report on the sanctions and measures imposed under the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) by National Competent Authorities (NCAs).

The report shows that the NCAs in 15 (out of 30) EU/EEA Member States imposed such sanctions last year. Most of these sanctions did not include a fine. For instance, in Luxembourg, there were 83 sanctions. Only one violation resulted in an administrative fine of EUR 50,000, while the remaining violations were sanctioned by injunctions (that may give raise to administrative fine if the entities do not rectify the deficiencies that have been identified during on-site inspections).

Portugal imposed fines of EUR 750,000 last year, being the EU/EEA Member State that imposed the biggest volume of fines under MiFID II last year.

In 15 Member States, NCAs imposed sanctions and measures which resulted in a total of 371 sanctions and measures. Those totalled EUR 1,828,802. The comparison between the 2019 and 2020 reports shows an increase in the number of Member States where sanctions and measures were applied, the total number of sanctions and measures reported and the aggregated amount of administrative sanctions imposed.

ESMA believes that (i) as MiFID II/MiFIR has been applicable for two years and due to the considerable time that enforcement processes take from the beginning to their conclusion; and (ii) the differences between the requirements of the MiFID II framework and national legislation on sanctions and measures highlighted above the data does still not allow to determine clear trends or tendencies in the imposition of sanctions and measures, nor to provide the basis for detailed statistics or clear comparisons across Member States.

If an NCA reported that “no/zero” sanctions and measures were imposed in 2019, this does not necessarily mean that the NCA did not take any enforcement action of MiFID II rules. Instead, a NCA’s report of no imposed MiFID II related sanctions and measures in 2019, may also stem from practical factors, such as the considerable time that enforcement processes take from the beginning to their conclusion. This may have led to sanctions and measures or criminal proceedings ongoing in 2019, being pushed beyond the cut-off date of the reporting period (i.e. 31 December 2019).

Read this next

Digital Assets

FINMA-regulated crypto bank SEBA Bank rebrands to AMINA

“As we look forward to 2024, our ambition is to accelerate the growth of our strategic hubs in Switzerland, Hong Kong, and Abu Dhabi, and to continue our global expansion, building on all the successes we have laid down over the past years.”

Retail FX

Good For New Traders: Free Crypto Sign Up Bonus No Deposit Required

In cryptocurrency trading, where innovation knows no bounds and the stakes are as dynamic as the digital assets themselves, the concept of no-deposit bonuses comes off as an enticement both for old and new traders. 

Digital Assets

Binance announces banking triparty agreement

“We’ve developed a solution that ensures our institutional clients can optimize their collateral and cryptocurrency investments, modeled after the traditional markets’ trading conduct. We are in close discussions with an array of banking partners and institutional investors who have also expressed strong interest in participating.”

Digital Assets

CoinEx fined $2 million in Québec, Canada

“This new decision follows the important decision obtained in earlier this year and is part of the AMF’s offensive against crypto asset trading platforms operating illegally in Québec that have not entered into pre-registration undertakings.”

Industry News

FINRA fines BofA Securities $24 million for spoofing in US Treasuries

BofA Securities failed to detect spoofing due to inadequate supervisory systems. These systems were not equipped to identify manual spoofing by traders.

Retail FX

Belgium regulator blacklists FXP360, Appex Finance, and Wise-Markets

Belgium’s financial watchdog, the Financial Services and Markets Authority ‎‎(FSMA), has issued a warning against the unauthorized activities of multiple ‎ platforms that are offering investments in the country without ‎complying with Belgian financial legislation.‎

Digital Assets

MicroStrategy piles on Bitcoin, acquiring 0.90% of circulating supply

MicroStrategy, the world’s largest Bitcoin corporate holder, has further increased its holdings of the primary cryptocurrency. According to a recent filing, the company acquired an additional 16,130 bitcoins between November 1 and November 29, spending $593.3 million at an average price of $36,785 per bitcoin.

Digital Assets

Paxos gets nod to issue dollar-backed stablecoins in UAE

Stablecoin issuer Paxos has received preliminary approval from Abu Dhabi’s Financial Services Regulatory Authority to issue U.S. dollar-backed virtual currencies and provide crypto-brokerage and custody services.

Digital Assets

Flare Labs Begins Testing FAssets on Coston Testnet Paving Way for Non-Smart Contracts to Flare

Flare Labs has introduced FAssets on the Coston testnet, enabling the integration of non-smart contract tokens like BTC, XRP, and DOGE into the DeFi ecosystem.