ASIC resources for small businesses. The Australian Securities & Investments Commission (ASIC) published “ASIC’s guide for small business directors,” which provides an overview of directors’ duties under the Corporations Act with a focus on small business directors. (5/19/2015) ASIC press release (small business directors). Separately, ASIC advised that the Australian Tax Office has developed a suite of materials to help small business owners make informed decisions about their business structure and their legal responsibilities. (5/19/2015) ASIC press release (business structure). 

Hong Kong regulators make OTC derivatives recommendations. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) released conclusions on the further consultation on mandatory reporting and related record keeping obligations under the new over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives regime. The conclusions recommend: that the requirement to submit daily valuation reports be deferred for additional discussion with market participants; that the proposed list of 18 jurisdictions for masking relief remain unchanged; that a further 15 operations be added to the list of markets and clearing houses to be prescribed; that the term “affiliate” be amended to expressly exclude collective investment schemes; and that records be readily accessible, but not required to be readily searchable and identifiable by reference to a particular transaction and counterparty. (5/15/2015) SFC press release. 

Hong Kong SFC issues new rules for dark pools. The SFC published its conclusions after consulting on proposals aimed at enhancing and unifying the regulatory regime for alternative liquidity pools (ALPs). Under the conclusions, which will be published as amendments to the Code of Conduct for Persons Licensed by or Registered with the Securities and Futures Commission, individual investors (including individual professional investors and their wholly owned investment holding corporations) will be prohibited from using ALPs; client facilitation orders will be treated as proprietary orders, which will have a lower execution priority in ALPs than agency orders; and there will be no mandatory “opt-in” requirement before client orders can be routed to ALPs, but ALP operators should permit their clients to opt out of having their orders transacted in ALPs. The conclusions are effective December 1, 2015. (5/15/2015) SFC press release. 

Hong Kong SFC reminds of know-your-client requirements. The SFC issued a Circular reminding intermediaries on the importance of appropriate account opening procedures for investors in and outside of Hong Kong in order to fully comply with the Know Your Client and account opening procedures requirements under the Code of Conduct. (5/12/2015) SFC press release. 

ASIC introduces inline XBRL reporting. The Australian Securities & Investments Commission announced the introduction of inline XBRL (iXBRL). The introduction of iXBRL removes the need for issuers to prepare and submit a separate financial report in PDF format. (5/6/2015) ASIC press release.