§ 8.39 p.m.
§ Lord McIntosh of Haringey
rose to move, That the draft order laid before the House on 12th June be approved [32nd Report from the Joint Committee.
The noble Lord said My Lords, the draft statutory instrument before the House makes a limited number of changes to the list of securities markets to which insider dealing legislation applies.
Insider dealing is a serious crime that taints the integrity and efficiency of any financial market, whether it constitutes the passing of information informally between two people or the elaborate large-scale operation of an offshore syndicate involving many others. Anyone who invests in our financial markets expects a trading environment that is fair, trustworthy and confidential. If we do not have a sound regulatory regime that works towards those goals, we are failing the investor.
London is one of the world's leading financial centres and attracts institutions from all over the world to invest and set up their operations here. Being—and being seen to be—a clean place in which to do business is an important part of London's success. We are determined to maintain that.
The criminal offence of insider dealing governed by Part V of the Criminal Justice Act 1993, which allows the Treasury to make an order specifying the regulated markets on which it is an offence to trade using inside information. The Insider Dealing (Securities and Regulated Markets) Order specifies the regulated markets. It was last amended in 2000. This order amends it again to add one overseas market, thereby bringing the securities traded on that market under the jurisdiction of the Criminal Justice Act for the purposes of insider dealing. The market concerned is SWX Swiss Exchange. The Swiss Exchange is a fully electronic trading system which, as part of the SWX group, offers integrated solutions in specific market segments on a cross-border basis.
Two other changes to the order are just the substitution of names. The first is Trade point, which, following an agreement with SWX Swiss Exchange, formed virt-x Exchange Limited. The new name needs to be changed on the list. Secondly, Cordeal became CoredealMTS after its alliance with EuroMTS. Again, the list needs amending.
1187 Finally, we would like to remove the words,operated by J P Jenkins Limited",from the market known as OFEX, since OFEX plc took over the operation of the OFEX market from J P Jenkins in January 2002.
It is important that the order is amended to keep market entries up to date. I commend the order to the House. I beg to move.
Moved, That the draft order laid before the House on 12th June be approved [32nd Report from the Joint Committee].—(Lord McIntosh of Haringey.)
§ Lord Shutt of Greetland
My Lords, this is simply an updating measure and raises no issues of policy. We are therefore happy to support it.
§ Lord McIntosh of Haringey
Well, then I am going to say something, my Lords. I do not think that this should be an affirmative instrument. It is exactly the kind of thing that should be dealt with by the negative procedure. We tried to do it generically, but that did not give enough specificity to enable people to know what publicly quoted exchanges they were dealing with. I think this is a very bad order. I commend it to the House.
§ Lord Kingsland
My Lords, if we thought that the noble Lord really thought that, we would have had plenty of things to say.
On Question, Motion agreed to.