Assessing MiFID’s facelift

MiFID I was largely successful in matching its original ambitions of moving towards a single European market in financial services, and removing the monopoly of regulated markets. However, the Directive fell down in a number of areas. Given the extended scope of products and activities covered by MiFID II, it is expected to have a significant impact on the European market in the years ahead.

FW moderates a discussion on MiFID II between Michael Thomas at Hogan Lovells, Kara Cauter at KPMG and Marius Floca at RBS.

TalkingPoint: Analysis of MiFID II

Cyber risks still overlooked in dealmaking

Cybersecurity is now one of the most pressing concerns among the spectrum of risks arising in the M&A process. Intellectual property, operational efficiency, and financial controls are all at stake when companies embark upon a transaction without properly managing this risk. Recent large-scale attacks and the notoriety they have gained may be increasing awareness of these issues, but understanding how best to address them requires expertise that may be lacking among dealmakers.

FW moderates a discussion on cyber-security risks in M&A between Adam Pang at Merrill DataSite, David Stanton at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP and Timothy J. Nagle at Reed Smith LLP.

TalkingPoint: Managing cyber-security risks in M&A

US banks face new regime

On 18 February 2014, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System approved a final rule implementing certain of the ‘enhanced prudential standards’ mandated by Section 165 of the Dodd-Frank Act. The Final Rule applies the enhanced prudential standards to US bank holding companies with $50bn or more in total consolidated assets and the US banking presence of foreign banking organisations (FBOs). The Final Rule is certainly an important new regulation for large US banking organisations. But it also represents a significant development for non-US banking organisations that have operations in the US.

FW spoke to Jeff Berman at Clifford Chance, Robin Maxwell at Linklaters and Brian D. Christiansen at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, about the new regime.

TalkingPoint: Enhanced prudential standards for banks in the US

EU proposes harmonised trade secret protection

Only two-thirds of EU member states have specific legislation protecting trade secrets, and trade secret protection varies widely. This acts as a significant barrier to legal and commercial certainty across Europe, and restricts innovation and exploitation of trade secrets across the European market. The EU's proposed Directive on the protection of trade secrets is a positive step towards effective harmonisation across EU member states and, for the first time, will establish a recognised framework of minimum protections regarding abuse of trade secrets.

FW spoke to Warren Wayne, Robert Williams and Simon Shooter at Bird & Bird, about protecting trade secrets in the European Union.

TalkingPoint: Protecting trade secrets in the European Union

EU unveils merger simplification package

On 1 January 2014 the EC introduced key reforms to EC merger control rules, with the aim of reducing the information burden on companies, particularly for notification of non-complex mergers, and to streamline the pre-notification process. However, while the new rules will facilitate dealmaking in Europe, they will not in themselves increase the number of deals, and the EU Merger Regulation process will remain more complex and costly for simple transactions than other regimes.

FW spoke to Catriona Hatton at Baker Botts L.L.P., Davina Garrod at Bingham McCutcheon LLP and Ian Giles at Norton Rose Fulbright LLP, about European merger notification and control.

TalkingPoint: Changes to European merger notification and control

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