European Parliament Delays Hedge Fund Vote

May 10 2010 | 1:26pm ET

The European Union’s proposed alternative investments regulations have hit another snag.

Despite optimism last week that a compromise was imminent, a key European Parliament committee delayed its vote on the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive by a week to give it more time to hammer out differences among lawmakers. The rules would impose strict new reporting and custody requirements on hedge funds and private equity funds, as well as possible leverage limits. It is also likely to bar funds based in certain jurisdictions—which remain unclear—from the European market.

The rules require the approval of both the European Parliament and the EU’s finance ministers. The latter has also not been forthcoming after British Prime Minister Gordon Brown blocked a vote on the matter in March.

“More time is needed,” Sharon Bowles, a British member of the Parliament and head of the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee, said. The committee wishes to give “more consideration” to the opinion of Parliament’s legal affairs committee, and will now vote on May 17.

“It’s a European Parliament decision and we must respect their process,” Michel Barnier, the EU Financial Services Commissioner, said. But he added, “it’s important we reach an agreement quickly, hopefully before the summer.”


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