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Mark Bain


Louie Vargas


Michael Harris

Markets in Financial Instruments Directive

05 April, 2024

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One of the most important pieces of EU legislation is the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID), which seeks to make financial markets more open, efficient, and trustworthy. From its inception in 2007 until its revision to MiFID II in 2018, it played a crucial role in fostering long-term economic development in the European Union.

When taken as a whole, MiFID and MiFID II include stringent regulations meant to safeguard investors and promote honest dealings in the financial markets. The foundation for a more robust and efficient market landscape will be laid by these regulations, which are essential in making the EU’s financial environment more accessible and competitive.

What Does MiFID Stand For?

In order to ensure long-term economic development in Europe, this European law standardizes regulatory disclosures for EU-based businesses and increases financial market transparency. Financial institutions have established guidelines for appropriate conduct, and MiFID legislation has introduced further steps like requiring corporations to be transparent in their trading. After years of planning, the MiFID ii Directive finally took effect in 2007. 

In general, it has shown the following: the organization and business requirements for investment businesses, the regulations on transparency for commercial shares, the approval of financial instruments to trade, the permission for regulated markets, and regulatory reporting to avoid market abuse. Businesses falling under their purview include banks, investment firms, and stock exchanges. It oversees the supply of products and the operations of financial instruments.

It failed to satisfy sufficient investment requirements upon its implementation. Consequently, in 2018, a new system known as MiFID II was introduced, which is compatible with the most recent technology. It controls the arrangement’s gaps. Its ultimate goal is to supersede the prior legislation in terms of strength. More transparency on trading platforms, better portfolio management, customer protection, and reporting and regulations for transactions are the main points. Along with MiFID and MiFID II, the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (MiFIR) collaborates to broaden the scope of the conduct regulations to include more asset classes.

Markets in Financial

Client Segmentation Under the MiFID Act

In MiFID, one of the most important parts is categorizing customers. Clients may be either professional, retail, or qualifying counterparties. The idea behind the categories is that various types of customers pose different risks and that regulation protections should reflect that.

Clients or investors may have varying degrees of financial literacy and, as a result, need different degrees of security when interacting with financial institutions like banks. The level of protection offered is ranked from lowest to most excellent for retail customers, with eligible counterparties receiving the lowest.

Customers are given various degrees of detail, general explanations, and information about the risks involved in a transaction according to the kind of customer.

Elements Setting up MiFID

  • Market Structure

The primary goal in redesigning the market’s structure to be more efficient was to fill up the gaps left by the old regulations. Consequently, regulated platforms have become the new trading grounds. This setup requires all transactions involving investment companies placing orders with their customers via the systems to be registered as Multilateral Trade Facilities (MTFs). To bring MTFs into sync with Regulated Markets (RMs), a multilateral trading platform called an Organized Trade Facility (OTF) was also established.

  • Transparency

The stock market is now more transparent than in previous years. New rules, including pre-and post-trade controls, for non-equity instruments have come into effect, and it is now obligatory to publicly disclose market data and commercial information.

  • Investor Protection

New regulations are in place to safeguard consumer assets and keep tabs on items, which is good news for investors. The European Banking Authority (EBA) and the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) have made selling and distributing financial products illegal. In tandem with the legislation, new and enhanced standards of behaviour pertaining to consumer data were established. Modifications to the Insurance Mediation Directive (IMD) have finally brought about new rules for investment products that are based on insurance.

  • Mandatory Reporting

All transactions now require reporting. There is a higher level of data that must be incorporated into the extensive report. To guarantee accurate reporting, businesses should routinely verify their reporting structure. Both risk managers and regulators now rely heavily on reporting requirements.

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