Central Bank of Ireland issues Market Abuse Regulation questionnaire to issuers

Market Abuse

Date: 17 June 2020

On 16 June 2020 the Central Bank of Ireland issued a questionnaire to all issuers of equities on the regulated market of Euronext Dublin regarding compliance with their obligations under the Market Abuse Regulation (Regulation 596/2014/EU) (“MAR”) and related and supporting legislation.  The Central Bank will use the responses to that questionnaire to inform its future supervisory work. This will include selecting a number of participants on the regulated market of Euronext Dublin and those who act on their behalf for further assessment of the extent to which they comply with the MAR requirements to recognise, manage and, in the case of issuers, publicly disclose inside information as soon as possible and in compliance with their statutory obligations.

This follows a review by the Central Bank of the timeliness and nature of announcements made by various industry sectors on the impact of Covid 19. This review indicates that entities in certain sectors have been more proactive in making announcements than others. It is critical that issuers provide investors and other market participants with all of the information they are entitled to at this time. The Central Bank continues to closely monitor disclosures provided by issuers. 

The Central Bank will issue a similar questionnaire to Euronext Dublin SME Growth Market participants later in 2020.

Further Information

The Central Bank, in its Industry Communication in January 2020,[1] indicated it expects to devote considerable supervisory resource this year to examining the compliance by regulated entities and issuers with their obligations to recognise and manage inside information and, in the case of relevant regulated entities, to identify suspicious transactions and orders.

Covid 19 has thrown the importance of these areas into very sharp focus given the uncertainty and economic disruption it has created. The Central Bank reminds authorised firms, issuers and those who act on their behalf, of their obligations to consumers, investors and to the market pursuant to MAR, and in particular stresses the following:

  1. The importance of issuers of financial instruments complying with their obligation under Article 17 MAR to disclose inside information to the market as soon as possible, including in circumstances where there is a material change to financial expectations.
  2. The importance of issuers and those who advise them continuing to identify inside information of all types, irrespective of whether it is Covid 19-related and creating and maintaining consequential inside information lists pursuant to Article 18 MAR.
  3. All entities and market participants should take care to ensure continued compliance with their regulatory obligations.