ESMA publishes Final Guidelines on Article 25 of Directive 2011/61/EU (AIFMD)

The CSSF hereby informs market participants that the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published on 17 December 2020 its final Guidelines on Article 25 of Directive 2011/61/EU (AIFMD) related to leverage risks in the alternative investment funds sector. The Guidelines have been issued in response to the December 2017 Recommendations by the European Systemic Risk Board (ESRB/2017/6) to address liquidity and leverage risks in investment funds, in particular in relation to Recommendation E.

On 27 March 2020, ESMA published a Consultation Paper (CP) on the proposed draft Guidelines. The consultation closed on 1 September 2020. The Final Report provides for an overview of the feedback received on the consultation, explains how ESMA took this feedback into account and also contains the final Guidelines.

The main objective of the Guidelines, which apply only to National Control Authorities and not to market participants, is to ensure the common, uniform and consistent application of Article 25 of the AIFMD. In particular, the Guidelines relate to the assessment of leverage-related systemic risk and aim to ensure that National Competent Authorities (NCAs) adopt a consistent approach when assessing whether the conditions for imposing leverage-related measures are met.

They will become applicable two months after the publication of their translations into the official EU languages on the ESMA website.