ESMA approves Greece short selling ban

1 October,, Lagos – The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) in collaboration with the Hellenic Capital Market Commission (HCMC) has again issued an extension on the short selling ban earlier imposed in Greece. The new ban is in extension of the previous order which expired on Wednesday 30 September 2015. And is expected to remain in place until 24:00:00 (CET) on 9 November 2015.

Greece short selling ban on bank shares

This measure prohibits transactions in any shares of five credit institutions admitted to trading on the Athens Exchange and the Multilateral Trading Facility of “EN.A” (Alternative Market of the Athens Exchange). It also regards all depository receipts (ADRs, GDRs) representing those shares, including sales which are covered with subsequent intraday purchases.

The short selling an affects all natural or legal persons, irrespective of their country of residence, but would be subject to the exemption for market making activities, provided that short selling transactions are conducted for hedging purposes.

Decision on extension

This decision to extend the ban was born out of the fact that the ESMA considers that adverse developments which constitute a serious threat to market confidence in the Greek market still persist and that the proposed measure is appropriate and proportionate to address those threats. This prompted the body to take adequate steps in safeguarding financial market operation, which could potentially lead to a worsening situation with the country’s finances.

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