CFDs and Binary Options – Central Bank product intervention powers

Investment Firms

Date: 16 January 2019

In July and August 2018, ESMA introduced temporary product intervention measures, as follows:

  • Binary Options - a prohibition on the marketing, distribution or sale of binary options to retail investors; and
  • Contracts for difference (CFDs) - a restriction on the marketing, distribution or sale of CFDs to retail investors.

The Central Bank welcomed and supported these ESMA measures and ESMA’s subsequent renewals of these temporary measures. 

The Central Bank is now notifying the market that it is considering using the product intervention powers contained in MiFIR once the ESMA product intervention measures lapse, to ensure the continued protection of retail investors in relation to the sale of CFDs and binary options.