European Securities Regulation, Private Law and the Investment Firm-Client Relationship
European Review of Private Law, Vol. 17, No. 5, pp. 925-952, 2009
32 Pages Posted: 29 Oct 2009
Date Written: October 28, 2009
The relationship between the investment firm and its (potential) client was traditionally the exclusive domain of private law. The leading role of private law in determining the investment firm-client relationship, however, has recently been put under pressure as a result of the EC securities regulation increasingly becoming relevant for this relationship. This article explores to what extent private law in the area of the investment firm-client relationship has been superseded by supervision standards following the implementation of the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) 2004 in national legal systems. The author concludes that although there has been a major shift in focus from private law to supervision standards, private law has not lost its importance for the investment firm-client relationship. As a result, private law and the way in which private law and supervision standards interact may have a major impact upon the ability of the MiFID to pursue its policy goals. It is submitted therefore that the EU legislator should take the relationship between national private law systems and the EC securities regulation much more seriously than this has been the case so far.
Keywords: EC securities regulation, MiFID, financial supervision, conduct of business rules, private law, investment firm-client relationship
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