Japan

FSA establishes the Financial Policies Monitor. In an effort to improve its financial policies, the Financial Services Agency has established the Financial Policies Monitor through which it can receive comments on financial policies. (3/1/2016)FSA press release.

Hong Kong

SFC publishes consultation conclusions on Principles of Responsible Ownership. The Securities and Futures Commission released consultation conclusions on the Principles of Responsible Ownership, which aim to provide guidance on how investors should fulfill their ownership responsibilities in relation to investments in Hong Kong listed companies. (3/7/2016) SFC press release.

SFC and DoJ sign MoU to strengthen cooperation in handling criminal cases.The SFC and the Department of Justice entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to formalize and further strengthen cooperation in the handling of criminal cases under the Securities and Futures Ordinance and other relevant legislation. (3/4/2016) SFC press release.

SFC stresses accurate, clear and balanced disclosure of inside information.The SFC published the latest issue of its Corporate Regulation Newsletter reminding listed companies to disclose inside information in an accurate, clear and balanced manner and to ensure equal, timely and effective access by the public. This edition focuses on potential problems that may arise when disclosing information through alternative means, including social media and corporate Websites. (3/3/2016) SFC press release.

SFC concludes consultation on changes to ATS Guidelines. The SFC has published conclusions to the consultation on proposed amendments to the Guidelines for the Regulation of Automated Trading Services. (3/1/2016) SFC press release.

SFC establishes a Fintech Contact Point. The SFC has established a Fintech Contact Point as a dedicated channel to encourage businesses involved in the development and application of financial technology in Hong Kong to engage with the SFC. The SFC has also established a Fintech Advisory Group that will focus on the opportunities, risks and regulatory implications of developments related to Fintech. (3/1/2016) SFC press release.

Singapore

MAS amends Singapore Code on Take-overs and Mergers. The Monetary Authority of Singapore issued a revised Code on Take-overs and Mergers pursuant to Section 139(6) of the Securities and Futures Act. (2/25/2016) MAS press release.

Australia

ASIC remakes ‘sunsetting’ class orders on superannuation. Following public consultation, the Australian Securities & Investments Commission issued two legislative instruments that relate to superannuation: ASIC Corporations (Superannuation: Accrued Default Amount and Intra-fund Transfers) Instrument 2016/64 and ASIC Corporations (Superannuation: Investment Strategies) Instrument 2016/65. The instruments will continue the substantive effect of relief that ASIC had granted by Class Order. This relief was due to expire under the Legislative Instruments Act 2003 later in 2016. (3/2/2016) ASIC press release.

ASIC notes Slater and Gordon’s decision to reduce asset values. ASIC noted the decision by Slater and Gordon Limited (S+G) to reduce asset values in its financial report for the half year ending on December 31, 2015. ASIC also noted S+G’s earlier decision to reclassify a portion of its work in progress and disbursement assets as non-current in its financial report for the year ending on June 30, 2015. (2/29/2016) ASIC press release.

ASIC consults on addressing ‘sunsetting’ dollar disclosure class orders. ASIC released a consultation paper proposing to maintain relief that ASIC has previously provided from certain obligations under the Corporations Act 2001 to state various costs, fees, charges expenses and interests as amounts in dollars in certain disclosure documents. The consultation paper also sets out ASIC’s proposal to withdraw some relief. This consultation paper is part of ASIC’s response to the sunsetting of legislative instruments. The class orders considered in the consultation paper are due to expire on October 1, 2016 or April 1, 2017. (2/29/2016) ASIC press release. 

ASIC publishes fourth report on corporate finance regulation. ASIC published its fourth report on the regulation of corporate finance issues in Australia. The report, which covers July to December 2015, provides companies and their advisers with insights into ASIC’s regulatory approach in the corporate finance sector and aims to assist them with their associated legal and compliance obligations. It also demonstrates the important role ASIC plays in facilitating business in Australia while ensuring that standards that benefit the investment community are maintained. (2/26/2016) ASIC press release.