UK: key points for financial institutions on Government response to BIS transparency and trust paper

On 21 April 2014, the Government published its response to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS)’s July 2013 discussion paper “Transparency and Trust discussion paper”.  The response proposes a number of key changes (summarised below), many of which will require primary legislation, and are thus dependent on the availability of parliamentary time.  Meanwhile, the Government invites views on the policy direction set out in this response as it moves towards its implementation in legislation. 

Banks and other financial institutions will be interested in two of the matters not being taken forward.  Continue reading

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US: Whistleblowing – internal investigation documents may not always be privileged

In a controversial decision, US ex rel Harry Barko v. Halliburton Company, et al, a US District Court ordered an employer to disclose documents generated during an internal investigation into a whistleblower’s complaints.  Continue reading on Employment notes.

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UK: With-profits Mutuals – FCA confirms the way forward

The FCA has at last confirmed that it will help mutual life insurers to avoid closure once they can no longer write material levels of new with-profits business. In a move designed to promote competition in retail financial services, the FCA has agreed to implement FSA proposals that aimed to allow mutuals with a viable business plan to transition from with-profits to non-profit products. Providing this lifeline is both long overdue and extremely welcome.

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UAE: Review of DFSA Markets Brief No. 6: ongoing market disclosure

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (“DFSA”) is the independent regulator of all financial and ancillary services conducted through the Dubai International Financial Centre (“DIFC”).  In January 2014, the DFSA published Markets Brief No. 6 (“MB6″) which discussed the DFSA’s policy on:

  1. ongoing market disclosure requirements in relation to dividends and other distributions by Reporting Entities; and
  2. Connected Persons’ disclosures.

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Corporate Crime Update – April 2014

Welcome to the April 2014 edition of our corporate crime update – our round-up of developments in relation to corruption, money laundering, fraud, sanctions and related matters. Our update now covers a number of jurisdictions. For the full update on each jurisdiction, please click on the name of the jurisdiction below. Below we provide a brief overview of what is covered in each jurisdiction’s update. Continue reading

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Filed under Americas, Asia, Australia, Bank of England, Bribery and Corruption, China, Corporate Crime, Europe, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Middle East, Russia, Ukraine, US

US: Transitory movement of funds through New York banks no guarantee of jurisdiction

In a case of interest to foreign parties that routinely use New York’s banking system to facilitate dollar transactions, the New York Court of Appeals has reversed a decision by the Appellate Division that would have foreclosed ‘forum non conveniens’ dismissals as a matter of law whenever a foreign national, “effecting what is alleged to be a fraudulent transaction, moves dollars through a bank in New York.”  Left undisturbed, this ruling would have burdened overseas litigants in cases lacking any other nexus to the state by preventing them from using the doctrine of forum non conveniens in response to the often broad jurisdictional reach of New York’s “long-arm” statute.  For further commentary on this case, Mashreqbank PSC v. Ahmed Hamad al Gosaibi & Brothers Company, New York State Court of Appeals No. 54,  click here.

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ESMA consultation on notification of interests in listed companies under revised Transparency Directive

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) is consulting on draft regulatory technical standards on how interests in listed companies should be calculated for the purposes of the disclosure requirements under the revised Transparency Directive 2013/50/EC.  The deadline for responses is 30 May 2014. Continue reading

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UK: anonymous hearsay evidence will usually be inadmissible in professional disciplinary proceedings

The High Court of England and Wales has held that in general it would be unfair to admit “potentially significant” anonymous hearsay evidence in professional disciplinary proceedings, although there may be exceptions to this in some circumstances. 

Admitting anonymous hearsay evidence is in general unfair because it prevents defendants from challenging evidence by (i) advancing reasons why the witness might have an axe to grind against them or (ii) making enquiries or adducing conflicting evidence in rebuttal.  However, the court may, as it did in this case, uphold a professional disciplinary panel’s judgment even if the panel erred in admitting evidence, if it is clear from the decision that the panel did not take into account inadmissible evidence in reaching its decision.  Our briefing sets out a discussion of the case, White v Nursing and Midwifery Council [2014] EWHC 520 (Admin).

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DFSA proposes to introduce Qualified Investor Exempt Funds

In December 2013, the Dubai Financial Services Authority (the “DFSA”) issued its Consultation Paper on Qualified Investor Exempt Funds (the “Consultation Paper”), which proposed the introduction of a new category of Domestic Funds in the Dubai International Financial Centre (the “DIFC”).  Continue reading

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UK: the NAO reports on the FCA and PRA’s progress in regulating financial services

The National Audit Office (NAO) has published a report on “The Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority: Regulating financial services”, examining the progress made to date by the FCA and the PRA in developing and implementing their regulatory approaches.  A number of key facts in the report have grabbed the press headlines – most notably the £127 million forecast increase in the cost of regulation since legal cutover and the £472 million in regulatory fines imposed in 2013 (interestingly, the number of enforcement cases is half that of the FSA’s 2010 enforcement cases).  However, the detail of the report, which sets out a number of key findings and recommendations summarised below, provides some useful insights for those working in the regulated sector.

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