European Commissioner Addresses Disproportionate Regulation, Difficulties of Hedge Funds to Rely on AIFMD Passport and Increased Compliance Burden

In the wake of the financial crisis and as Europe moves toward Capital Markets Union (CMU), the European Commission (EC) has increased regulation applicable to hedge fund managers and others in the financial services industry. However, this increased regulatory framework has had unintended consequences on European financial markets, disproportionally affecting certain areas, reducing financing available to the wider economy and increasing the compliance burden for market participants. European Commissioner Jonathan Hill recently delivered a progress report on the CMU and discussed the regulatory framework and actions the EC is taking to ensure that it is appropriately fostering growth. This article summarizes Hill’s speech, focusing on portions most relevant to hedge fund managers, including his views on the European Market Infrastructure Regulation and the effectiveness of the marketing passport under the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive. For more on the CMU, see “ESMA Chair Calls for Increased Transparency and Regulatory Convergence As Interest Rates Rise” (Jan. 28, 2016); and “E.U. Action Plan to Unify Capital Markets May Affect Hedge Fund Managers” (Oct. 8, 2015). For additional commentary from Hill, see “European Commissioner Emphasizes Need for Proportionate Regulation to Promote the CMU” (Mar. 17, 2016); and “European Commissioner Calls for Economic and Regulatory Coordination” (Oct. 8, 2015). 

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