On November 28, HM Treasury published a consultation paper on draft secondary legislation to regulate LIBOR and make its manipulation a criminal offence.
The draft Financial Services and Markets Act (Regulated Activities) (Amendment) Order 2013 proposes two new regulated activities:
- providing information in relation to a regulated benchmark (currently LIBOR is the only proposed regulated benchmark, although there is provision to add others); and
- administering a regulated benchmark.
A further draft order, relating to "misleading statements" specifies the investments, activities and benchmarks in relation to three new criminal offences dealing with making misleading statements and conducting misleading practices. These offences will be created by draft amendments to the Financial Services Bill 2012-2013 and will result in the repeal of section 397 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000.
It is intended that the Financial Services Bill will receive royal assent before the end of 2012 and that the draft secondary legislation will be considered by Parliament in early 2013. Comments on the consultation must be submitted before December 24.