Provincial securities regulators have agreed to a request from the brokerage industry to delay an interim target for implementing new investor disclosure rules, but have told the industry they will not shift the final full implementation date in 2016.
The Canadian Securities Administrators, an umbrella group for provincial securities commissions, issued a notice Wednesday saying regulators will change an interim target for the implementation of the long-awaited Client Relationship Model Phase 2 (CRM2) rules from July 15, 2015, to Dec. 31, 2015. However, the regulators said the final deadline to fully implement new rules will remain July 16, 2016.
The rules will require brokerage firms and mutual fund dealers to give investors detailed information about the annual performance of their portfolios and the fees they have paid on their investments.
The Investment Industry Association of Canada (IIAC), a trade association representing brokerage firms, sent a request to regulators in December asking them to delay both the interim and final deadlines, saying the disclosure rules are proving complex for firms to implement. IIAC also argued that midyear implementation dates may be confusing for investors who will receive performance data for only part of a year.
But the Canadian Foundation for Advancement of Investor Rights, a shareholder advocacy group, urged regulators to reject the request, arguing there is plenty of time for firms to meet the deadlines and the information is too important to delay.
Securities regulators said Wednesday that they remain committed to the CRM2 project and do not want to jeopardize its implementation.
"In our view, these decisions represent reasonable steps to address the concerns expressed in your letter without compromising the objectives of the CRM2 amendments," they said in a response to IIAC's request.
While firms will still have to meet the July 15, 2016, deadline for disclosures, the regulators also said they will not be required to include comparative data for 2015 in their investment performance reports. That means they will be able to base the first investment performance reports on 2016 information alone.
Neil Gross, executive director of FAIR Canada, said Wednesday that he was pleased the final deadline has been maintained, ensuring investors won't have to wait longer for key information.
Mr. Gross said FAIR would have preferred to also see the interim time-line maintained "but it appears the CSA felt there was a need for a compromise."