Legal updates covering current topics.
The Finnish Financial Supervisory Authority (FFSA) implements the Guidelines issued by the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) under the Market Abuse Regulation (EU) No 596/2014 (MAR)
The MAR Guidelines regarding legitimate interests of issuers to delay disclosure of inside information and situations in which the delay of disclosure is likely to mislead the public (ESMA/2016/1478), issued by ESMA on 20 October 2016, have been implemented in the FFSA Guidelines 6/2016 with effect from 20 December 2016 by way of a direct reference to ESMA’s Guidelines. In the same connection, the FFSA reminds issuers that the obligation to disclose inside information, unless legitimately delayed, arises under MAR earlier than under the domestic legislation previously applied, and stresses that the reasoning of any decision to delay disclosure must be well documented. Once the inside information is disclosed, the FFSA must be informed of the delay of its disclosure. The FFSA also calls for the update of the issuers’ disclosure policies to ensure that any information is accurately classified when disclosed and that only inside information and other regulated information is disclosed as company announcements (fi. “pörssitiedote”). According to the FFSA, the classification of the disclosed information as a company announcement is sufficient to identify the information as inside information, as required by the Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2016/1055.
Also the MAR Guidelines (ESMA/2016/1477) regarding persons receiving market soundings has been implemented in the FFSA guidelines 10/2016 with effect from 10 January 2017. Market sounding comprises the communication of information, prior to the announcement of a transaction, in order to gauge the interest of potential investors in a possible transaction. The ESMA guidelines are addressed to persons receiving market soundings and detail the features which such persons are to take into account in order to assess whether the market sounding activity amounts to inside information, the steps to be taken by such persons and the records that such persons are to maintain.
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