Glenis Willmott, Labour MEP representing the East Midlands said:
“This is a major step forward in ensuring abuse in the finance industry is tackled.
“There will now be tough criminal sanctions with a minimum jail sentence of four years for insider dealing and market manipulation, and member states will be able to introduce higher sanctions if they wish.
Under the new rules, banks and financial institutions will now be criminally liable, ensuring crimes of market abuse and their consequences are taken seriously. Member States will also be able to introduce criminal sanctions for reckless behaviour and gross negligence which was a key problem during the financial crisis.”
“There are currently considerable differences between how national governments sanction market abuse. Harmonised minimum rules will ensure perpetrators cannot exploit differences in regimes across the EU.
“We will now see whether our own Government will sign up to this ground-breaking legislation. Their record is not good so far; for example, the UK has still not criminally prosecuted anyone for the gross manipulation of Libor.