On February 15, the Council of the European Union (the Council) published a press release announcing the adoption of a “quick fix” amendment to the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) in response to the economic impact caused by the COVID-19 pandemic (the Amendment).

The key changes to MiFID II in the Amendment include:

  • simplifying information requirements;
  • phasing out paper-based investment information;
  • amending the “ancillary activity exemption” to include a qualitative test in addition to the existing quantitative tests for firms trading in commodity derivatives; and
  • adapting the position limit regime for commodity derivatives to include additional exemptions as well as to support the development of new commodity markets.

The Amendment will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union before the end of February and will go into effect the day after its publication. EU Member States are required to implement the Amendment into national law within nine months of its publication.