Come next year, AIM companies could be facing a double jeopardy in respect of market disclosures.
On 3 July 2016 the Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) will come into force and will apply to AIM companies. The main disclosure obligations in MAR relate to the disclosure of inside information and disclosure of deals by persons discharging managerial responsibilities and closely associated persons. MAR will also introduce mandatory close period rules. The regulatory authority responsible for MAR compliance will be the Financial Conduct Authority.
The London Stock Exchange has published its view on how MAR will square up with the disclosure obligations in AIM Rule 11. The LSE acknowledges duplicate obligations will be placed on AIM companies but it is committed to retaining the Rule 11 obligations as it views those obligations as crucial to the integrity of AIM and the maintenance of an orderly market.
The LSE has said it will work closely with the FCA to minimise any duplication but it also acknowledges that only the FCA will be able to opine on MAR compliance and only the LSE will be able to opine on AIM Rule compliance, thereby placing AIM companies at risk of facing two different regulators, each applying a different set of rules, in the event of any breach.