The Commission has published an informal consultation on the next steps in its plans for the retail investment market. It asks for views on:

  • the scope of the initiative: the Commission thinks any definition of a PRIP should include any key packaged investment product, be flexible to encompass new products and should avoid incentivising regulatory arbitrage between similar products. Its working definition is that a PRIP is "a product where the amount payable to the investor is exposed to fluctuations in the market value of assets or payouts from assets, through a combination or wrapping of those assets, or other mechanisms than a direct holding". This definition would then carve out certain products, such as simple deposits;
  • the legislative approach: the Commission thinks it can use existing Directives, specifically MiFID, the IMD and the UCITS Directive; and
  • the content of a product disclosure regime: the Commission wants to introduce a new pre-contractual product disclosure regime and seeks views on how standardised it should be, the broad contents of the documents and who should be responsible for them.

The Commission has published a study by Europe Economics, which it commissioned. It asks for comments on its proposals by 31 January 2011.