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• Manfred Bergmann, Director, DG TAXUD, European Commission
PANEL I: CEO PANEL
|The CEOs of Europe’s exchanges will discuss the biggest challenges and opportunities facing their businesses and the markets in which they operate. Will consolidation continue, and what other changes will it trigger? Are EU’s markets safe? Is technology a threat or an opportunity? Are the structures of the EU and the US markets converging or diverging? Who are the newcomers of the future and what do they need to do to succeed?|
PANEL II: EU REGULATON AND MAKING MARKETS SAFE
European regulators will discuss where we stand five years since the start of the financial crisis. What shape of markets are we left with? What will change in Europe with the Banking Union? What will arise from Volcker, Vickers, and Liikanen? Will investors and taxpayers be better protected? What kind of investment banking will we have and will these banks be safe for the system and beneficial for the real economy? Why is market integrity important, and do our markets have it? Will Europe have benchmarks it can trust? What are the next big threats to the Internal Market? Are the current reforms the right mix of national vs EU vs global? Is G20 a forum for cooperation or confrontation? Do we have a longer term vision?
PANEL III: FUNDING THE REAL ECONOMY - WHAT DO OUR COMPANIES WANT?
In March, the European Commission launched its paper on long-term finance. Europe’s pressing challenge is to put the EU back on the path of growth. Europe faces long-term investment needs. But where will the money come from? The financial crisis has diminished the banks’ role particularly in those Member States under financial pressure and for SMEs. At the same time, the crisis has had a negative impact on the confidence and risk appetite of borrowers and institutional investors. Against this background, what sources of financing will be available for Europe’s companies? How can we bring investors back to capital markets? Are exchanges delivering for the economy? Will companies stay in equity markets? Should the EU consider measures such as the US Jobs Act to create jobs?
PANEL IV: THE FINANCIAL TRANSACTION TAX - DOES IT DO WHAT IT SAYS ON THE TIN?
In February 2013, the European Commission proposed a financial transaction tax (FTT) under enhanced cooperation by 11 member states: Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Austria, Portugal, Greece, Slovakia, Slovenia and Estonia. The financial sector has played a major role in causing the economic crisis whilst governments and European citizens at large have borne the costs. The primary objective is to ensure that the financial sector, which is at the origin of the 2008 crisis, shares some of the burden. But will the FTT deliver on the Commission goals? The initial scope is very broad. Many market participants are seeking exemptions. Will the real economy ultimately end up paying the tax, instead of the banks? If so, what impact will the FTT have on the current economic situation? Where will the FTT leave Europe in terms of global competitiveness?
PANEL V: DO WE NEED TO BE AFRAID OF THE DARK?
Capital market structures have changed radically in the US over the last decade due to technology and regulation. Recently, the three largest U.S. stock exchanges have called on regulators to craft tougher rules to rein in dark pools that are handling a growing portion of stock trading. Asia-Pacific equities markets do not resemble US and European market structure. Canadian and Australian legislators have adopted new rules to protect their public markets from dark trading. Europe is discussing whether we should allow bank crossing networks to cross orders in Organised Trading Facilities. Do current structures serve the economy well? Are the markets organised for traders or for investors? Does it matter?
PANEL VI: COMMODITIES: plaster on a wooden leg?
Exchange traded commodities have seen an upturn in the volume of trading since the start of the decade. This was largely a result of the growing attraction of commodities as an asset class and a proliferation of investment options which has made it easier to access this market. However, the role of commodity markets is often poorly understood. Are they used to hedge risks or are they increasingly prone to speculation? What did the ‘Financialisation’ do to commodity markets? Do position limits work and should we copy the US? Does trading in commodities differ from trading in other asset classes? Is there a convergence between futures and spot prices? How Dodd-Frank and EMIR is changing the landscape. Legislators and regulators have to think global and to act local! How are they managing their balancing act? Are EMIR and Dodd-Frank aligned, or will the two continents drift apart?