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Brussels, 15 October 2007

Financial services: Commission calls for easier public access to financial information on listed companies

The European Commission is encouraging Member States to create an electronic network interconnecting the national repositories which store financial information on listed companies. The implementation of this recommendation will facilitate investors' access to historical information on companies’ performance and financial position as well as on changes in major shareholdings.

Internal Market and Services Commissioner Charlie McCreevy said: “Transparency of company information must be made easier and simpler. Investors need easy electronic access, through a single gateway, to financial information on listed companies across the EU."

The Directive on transparency obligations of listed companies (2004/109/EC) requires that regulated financial information remains available to market participants at central depositories appointed nationally by Member States.

This Commission's recommendation encourages Member States to take the necessary steps in order to interconnect these central depositories This network should be electronic and its members should respect some minimum standards of security, certainty as to the information source, time recording and easy access by end users. The recommendation foresees an important role for the Committee of European Securities Regulators (CESR) in launching the electronic network.

CESR has also been invited to reflect, by September 2010, on the future development of this pan-European network. The long term goal would be to provide a one-stop-shop for investors (and other interested parties) for regulated financial information on listed companies.

The Commission will monitor the implementation of this recommendation and asses the need for further measures.
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