On March 28, the European Securities and Markets Association (ESMA) published a statement updating market participants on its preparations for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union, in the event of an agreement on transitional arrangements (Withdrawal Agreement) not being in place (No-Deal Brexit). ESMA’s update follows the European Council’s (EC’s) agreement to the UK government’s request to extend the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union (Brexit) to either April 12 if the House of Commons does not approve a Withdrawal Agreement by March 29, or to May 22 if it does.
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On March 15, the five US regulators (the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Farm Credit Administration, the Federal Housing Finance Agency and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) that are responsible for the margin rules for uncleared swaps that apply to prudentially regulated swap dealers adopted an interim final rule designed to ensure that qualifying swaps may be transferred from a UK entity to an affiliate in the European Union or the United States without triggering new margin requirements.
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On March 19, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published a statement on the impact on the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (MiFIR) trading obligation for shares (TO) if the United Kingdom left the European Union on March 29 (Brexit) without a withdrawal agreement (no-deal Brexit) and without an equivalence decision for the United Kingdom made by the European Commission.
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On March 19, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published a press release announcing the results of the annual transparency calculations of the large in scale (LIS) and size specific to the instruments (SSTI) thresholds for bonds. ESMA’s publication had originally been planned for March 1, but was postponed as its IT systems required more time than anticipated to complete the calculations, as reported in the Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest edition of March 8, 2019.
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On February 28, the Packaged Retail and Insurance-based Investment Products (PRIIPs) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 (UK Regulations) were published together with a draft explanatory memorandum.

The UK Regulations were laid before Parliament on January 9, as reported in the January 11 edition of Corporate & Financial Weekly Digest. There do not appear to be any substantive changes.
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On March 4, the United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published a document containing statements of policy on how it intends to operate the transparency regime under the retained UK version of the European Union’s Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (UK MiFIR), if the United Kingdom leaves the European Union without an implementation period.

The FCA states on a webpage related to the statements of policy that they outline how it will use its decision-making powers relating to the transparency regime in these circumstances. The FCA also notes that it will have a degree of flexibility during a four-year transitional period to allow it to build the systems needed as currently operated by the European Securities and Markets Authority and to change the regime if necessary to reflect a move from an EU-wide trading data set to one that is solely related to the United Kingdom.


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On March 7, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published a statement outlining its approach to the application of key provisions of the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II), Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (MiFIR) and the Benchmarks Regulation (BMR), in the event that the United Kingdom leaves the European Union without a withdrawal agreement (no-deal Brexit).
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On February 26 and 27, the Council of the European Union and the European Parliament issued statements, respectively, announcing that they had reached a political agreement on the proposed Investment Firms Regulation (IFR) and the proposed Investment Firms Directive (IFD).
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On February 18, the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) published a press release confirming that it has adopted recognition decisions to permit three UK central counterparties (CCPs) to continue to provide CCP services to EU trading venues and EU clearing members following the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union on March 29 (Exit Day) in the event that no agreement on transitional arrangements is in place with the EU (no-deal Brexit).
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