Market Abuse Regulation

Applicable from 3 July 2016

The new Market Abuse Regime, which consists of:

  • the Market Abuse Regulation (EU 596/2014 - ‘MAR’) and
  • the Market Abuse Directive on criminal sanctions for market abuse (Directive 2014/57/EU or 'CSMAD' or ‘MAD II’) became applicable in Ireland and across the European Union on 3 July 2016.

The new regime replaces the previous Market Abuse Directive (2003/6/EC).

CSMAD and elements of MAR including delegated acts were transposed into Irish law by way of the European Union (Market Abuse) Regulations 2016 (S.I. 349 of 2016) (‘2016 Regulations’). The 2016 Regulations replaces the previous Market Abuse (Directive 2003/6/EC) Regulations 2005 (S.I. 342 of 2005).

The introduction of MAR and CSMAD forms part of the European regulatory reform agenda for financial services, aimed at ensuring greater transparency and market integrity.

  • The new Market Abuse Regime strengthens the legal framework underpinning the function of detecting, sanctioning and deterring market abuse. It extends its scope to apply to new markets, new trading platforms and new behaviours and to cover a broader range of financial instruments. It contains prohibitions for insider dealing, market manipulation and unlawful disclosure of inside information and provisions to prevent and detect these.
  • MAR introduces a number of changes including:
  • A broadening of the scope of legislation to include trading platforms, such as Multilateral Trading Facilities (MTFs), and Over the Counter (OTC) trades, including in derivatives.
  • Additional notification requirements in relation to suspicious activity, delay in the disclosure of inside information, managers' transactions and
  • Enhanced requirements regarding the preparation and maintenance of insider lists and the handling of inside information.

The Market Abuse Directive introduces:

  • Minimum rules for criminal sanctions for market abuse, and
  • Wider range of activities which constitute an offence, to include, for example, inciting, aiding and abetting the commission of certain market abuse offences.