Amendment to the Benchmark Regulation

EESC opinion: Amendment to the Benchmark Regulation

Key points:


  • welcomes the European Commission's proposals to ensure continuity in the operating provisions of financial operators in the Capital Markets Union (CMU).
  • considers that markets need to be secure, stable and shock-resistant if the CMU is to function properly. It is therefore paramount and a matter of priority to organise the replacement of the LIBOR reference especially when no other ‘back-up’ index has been provided for in contracts.
  • welcomes the fact that the proposed amendments to the Benchmark Regulation will introduce a statutory power, whereby the European Commission designates a replacement rate if and when a benchmark whose cessation would result in significant disruption in the functioning of financial markets in the Union ceases to be published.
  • also welcomes the fact that the statutory replacement rate will, by operation of the law, replace all references to the "benchmark in cessation" in all contracts entered into by an EU supervised entity.
  • considers it appropriate that for contracts not involving an EU supervised entity, Member States will supervise statutory replacement of rates/indexes at national level.
  • endorses the proposal that competent authorities and supervised entities be required to periodically report to the Commission on the use of the exempted benchmarks by EU businesses
  • Finally, the EESC recommends that implementation of the regulation and its incorporation into financial markets be monitored.