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What's Happening with MiFID II Now

January 19, 2018

MiFID II went into the effect this month. But that doesn’t necessarily mean all organizations are compliant with this new EU regulation. Some regulators say that’s fine, as long as there’s forward movement on MiFID II compliance efforts.

That’s because this whole MiFID II thing is new, and at least a little confusing. So many organizations that need to comply are still figuring out what they need to do.

If you’re one of them, or you just want to understand MiFID II, here’s a guide.

What is MiFID II?

MiFID II stands for Markets in Financial Instruments Directive. It is a regulation that applies to financial services entities that do business in the European Union.

This new regulation makes it mandatory to record all conversations related to financial transactions on both personal- and company-owned mobile devices. It also requires those affected to hold on to those records for five years.

What was the deadline?

Technically, MiFID II went into effect Jan. 3.

But at least one regulator has indicated it will go easy on enforcement while financial entities get their ducks in a row on this complex new requirement.

What did regulators say?

Reuters, in September, reported the following comments by Mark Steward of Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority. “[W]e have no intention of taking enforcement action against firms for not meeting all requirements straight away where there is evidence they have taken sufficient steps to meet the new obligations by the start-date.”

However, Steward is just one guy at one regulatory body in the larger EU. So others might have a different view.

Indeed, Deloitte warns businesses not to assume regulators will go easy on MiFID II non-compliance. “Firms need to act swiftly to identify areas where they are at risk of not being fully compliant and plan accordingly, including documenting how and by when they will achieve full compliance,” said Deloitte (News - Alert), which is in the business of helping companies do that kind of work.

What should organizations be doing?

What exactly those impacted by MiFID II need to do is not entirely clear. That’s why at least one regulator is allowing those affected by it some additional time. But here are some thoughts from companies that offer solutions in this realm.

Umesh Patel of Revista Systems in this Finextra piece suggests that API, microservices, and SaaS (News - Alert) “mean that tactical solutions are much more attractive than adding components to already outdated systems.”

Robert Powell, director of compliance at IPC Systems (News - Alert), in this byline says that cloud-based automated and unified recording and archiving platforms that offer a single pane of glass into all communications channels are a good choice for organizations working on MiFID II compliance.

Edited by Mandi Nowitz

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