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5 Apr, 2016

Australian Securities and Investments Commission releases market integrity report

Canberra, ASIC media release, 04 April 2016 – The Australian Securities and Investments Commission, ASIC, has released its six-monthly report on market integrity focusing on the three areas of deterrence, standards and education, and behavioural change.

In its new short form, Report 475 Market Integrity Report: July to December 2015 (REP 475), covers the work of ASIC’s Market Integrity Group. This is a group within ASIC that focuses on ensuring that Australia’s licensed markets are fair, orderly, transparent and efficient.

Market Integrity Report

There were 14 significant enforcement outcomes during the six months, including the sentencing of Robert Dulhunty, a director of Healthzone, for 18 months. By intentionally and repeatedly conspiring to manipulate the market, Mr Dulhunty abused the trust of Healthzone investors.

Reviews of high-frequency trading (HFT) and dark liquidity were completed, revealing that current levels of HFT and dark liquidity trading have not adversely affected the function of our markets.

In order to better regulate market conduct, we ran an education campaign to encourage the reporting of suspicious activity. This was widely communicated and a new form was launched on the Market Entity Compliance (MECS) portal to make lodging these reports easier.

Key statistics from the report include:

  • 96 matters under investigation at any one time (on average)
  • 14 significant enforcement outcomes
  • two enforceable undertakings
  • 21,350 trading alerts
  • 102 market surveillance inquiries
  • 118 industry meetings
  • 32 compliance surveillances, and
  • 11 risk-based assessments.

Rep 475 consists of a short video and webpage:

Market intermediaries are encouraged to circulate the video and webpage to their staff to increase awareness of ASIC’s actions and ongoing areas of focus.