Date: 24th September 2020

24 September 2020 – The European Commission’s (EC) Directorate-General for Financial Services, Financial Stability and Capital Markets Union (DG FISMA) published a third action plan to build a Capital Markets Union (CMU) – this time for “people and businesses” - which sets 16 policy and regulatory objectives in order to “finally complete the Capital Markets Union”.[1]

Although the Action Plan is de facto built on the framework of the Final Report of the High-Level Forum on the Future of the CMU (HLF CMU Report), BETTER FINANCE is disappointed to see that retail investors are still not at the forefront on these policy and regulatory proposals.

The Action Plan says more than what it actually sets out to do: “Consumers should have more choice”, be “appropriately protected”, get “fair investment outcomes” since “savings generate low or even negative real interest rates”, the CMU should “contribute to building trust”, acknowledging that there is “limited comparability of similar investment products” or that “the current structure and features of retail distribution systems are often insufficiently competitive and cost- effective”.

Yet, the measures planned to implement Actions 7, 8, and 9 on making “the EU an even safer place for individuals to save and invest long-term” lack the ambition from both the HLF CMU Report and the European Parliament’s Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) own initiative report on the Capital Markets Union.[2]

[1] The CMU Action Plan quoting the EC President, Ursula von der Leyen.

[2] See here the consolidated text; note that the report was voted in the Committee only so far.