CSA: MiFID II Unbundling Won’t Require Changes to Canadian Soft Dollar Rule

December 21, 2017
  • The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) have concluded that no changes to National Instrument 23-102 Use of Client Brokerage Commissions (NI 23-102) are required under MiFID II unbundling requirements (the MiFID Unbundling Rules).
  • Under the MiFID Unbundling Rules, the European Union (EU) will require that research inducements be completely separated (unbundled) from trading fees as of January 3, 2018.
  • The CSA reached its conclusion following consultation with asset managers, dealers, pension plans and other regulatory authorities.
  • CSA Staff are of the view that Canadian market participants will be able to comply with both MiFID II and NI 23-102 as the two requirements are not in conflict.

Background

The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (MiFID II) is the EU legislation that regulates firms providing investment services in financial instruments in the EU. In 2016, the European Commission released a Delegated Directive under MiFID which proposed the separation of research and trading fees charged to clients by investment firms. This unbundling of commissions is expected to come into force and apply to all EU and third country investment firms providing investment services or activities in the EU effective January 3, 2018.

In Canada, NI 23-102 governs the use of client brokerage commissions and provides that the payment for research and order execution may be bundled into a single transaction commission.

Following the release of the Delegated Directive, and in an effort to determine if changes to NI 23-102 would be required, CSA Staff engaged in consultations with industry participants as to whether the MiFID Unbundling Rules were consistent with current Canadian regulations.

Further Information

The CSA intend to continue monitoring developments in respect of the MiFID Unbundling Rules:

For further information about the MiFID Unbundling Rules, please see the European Securities and Markets Authority Questions and Answers On MiFID II and MiFIR investor protection and intermediaries topics.

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