Patience is a virtue

Last week’s announcement of the political agreement on MiFID II felt like the Gordian knot had been cut. Maybe 2014 will turn out to be the year when the regulatory uncertainty that dominated 2013 gives way to thrilling new opportunities. Amid all the excitement (and relief that MiFID II will escape the feared entanglement in the upcoming European Parliament elections), it would be easy to overlook the fact that the late night meeting actually only produced a political agreement on the last unsolved and highly disputed issues. This in itself is a great leap forward, but we still don’t have agreed MiFID II or MiFIR texts to study in detail. A number of technical working meetings still have to take place before final texts can be presented to market participants. Expectations as to when those meetings will conclude range between anything from another two weeks, to the end of February at the earliest. Considering the MiFID review was officially kicked off in July 2010, a few more weeks doesn’t sound so bad.

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