Ernst & Young, a professional services firm providing financially-based solutions to businesses, and JWG-IT Group, an independent think-tank, announced on Monday a new collaborative agreement, which enables both organisations to work with their clients to embed the European Union’s Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID).
The two organisations say they will work together to develop joint thought leadership to offer clients insight into business and technical challenges arising from the European Union's financial services action plan (FSAP) and other regulatory programmes.
The partnership will be led by Dr Stephen Christie, a partner in Ernst & Young's regulatory and risk management practice, and PJ Di Giammarino, JWG-IT's chief executive officer.
JWG-IT recently reported a wide variance on the state of the industry's readiness to adapt to MiFID. Firms are expecting fines for non-compliance from the first quarter of 2008. Sixty-eight percent of firms expect the first client to challenge their best execution in Q1 and over 80% forecast a challenge before autumn.
"The introduction of MiFID will continue to impact the markets for some time to come," says Christie, Ernst & Young. "Our collaboration with JWG-IT will focus on helping wholesale firms to build business models underpinned by the latest technology, while meeting the prevailing regulatory requirements," he continues.
"Only the UK met the deadline for MiFID transposition and 66% of member states put the new laws onto their books by the implementation date of 1 November 2007, leaving thousands of EU investment firms little time to adjust to new rulebooks," comments PJ Di Giammarino, CEO, JWG-IT. "This is a critical time for the industry as it has taken the first few steps in the four-year marathon known as MiFID implementation. Issues that one would have expected to have been addressed during the business analysis and testing phases of firms' change programmes are rearing their head in real live environments," he explains.