Banking and Financial Services
Last updated: 15 December 2017

Bird & Bird's EU Legislation Tracker highlights Regulations and Directives scheduled to take effect or to be implemented by Member States in the period to the UK's departure from the EU. It does not provide an exhaustive survey. Instead, we have sought to summarise some of the key legislation, both draft and finalised, which we are tracking in the run up to Brexit and which are likely to be of interest to companies which do business in the UK and/or elsewhere in Europe. 

The Tracker includes a short commentary on the substance of each of the measures identified, and a timeline for their known or likely effective dates (for Regulations) or implementation deadlines (for Directives). These are colour coded by reference to the likely date of Brexit.

For the purposes of the Tracker, we have assumed that the UK will exit the EU two years from its service of Article 50 notice (i.e. 29th March 2019). Ultimately the UK's Great Repeal Bill will determine whether the UK will retain, implement, amend or repeal the legislation summarised in our Tracker and the date when this will happen.

Implementation status 
  Implementation deadline/effective date likely to be pre-Brexit
  Implementation deadline/effective date likely to be post-Brexit
 Timeline  EU legislation

Implemented on

26 June 2017

Fourth Money Laundering Directive (MLD4) ((EU) 2015/849)
  • The fourth piece of EU legislation on the prevention of the use of the EU financial system for money laundering and terrorist financing, which seeks to bring the EU regime in line with Financial Action Task Force standards. The EU's new anti-money laundering legislation.
  • MLD4 does not apply solely to financial services institutions, but extends to auditors, accountants, tax advisers, legal professionals, trust & company service providers, estate agents, gambling service providers, and traders of goods of EUR 10,000 or more.

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Implementation deadline:


  Fifth Money Laundering Directive (MLD5) ((EU) 2016/208)
  • The EU Commission has published a proposal for a Fifth Money Laundering Directive ("MLD5") to amend and expand upon MLD4.
  • Under MLD5, virtual currency exchange platforms and custodian wallet providers are to be brought within the scope of MLD4.

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Implemented on:

25 June 2017

Took effect: 26 June 2017

Revised Wire Transfer Regulation (WTR2) ((EU) 2015/847)
  • Like MLD4, WTR2 seeks to align the EU's anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing regime in line with Financial Action Task Force standards, in this instance by ensuring that fund transfers be traceable.
  • WTR2 requires payment service providers ("PSPs") to ensure that payee information (name and account number or unique transaction identifier) accompanies fund transfers. Where the value of the fund transfer exceeds EUR1,000, PSPs are also obliged to verify payee information.

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Implemented on:

3 July 2017

Takes effect:

3 January 2018

Second Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II) ((EU) 2014/65)

Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (600/2014)

(together, MiFID II)
  • MiFID II sets out the EU framework for the regulation of financial markets and trading venues and of the way in which they operate.
  • The scope of the original MiFID is extended under MiFID II. MiFID II will cover new products and services (e.g. structured deposits, emissions allowances), and organised trading facilities (OCFs) constitute a new type of regulated trading venue. (OCFs are multilateral discretionary trading platforms (e.g. broker crossing networks), which were not previously regulated).

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Implementation deadline:

13 January 2018

Second Payment Services Directive (PSD2) ((EU) 2015/2366)
  • PSD2 updates the EU's primary piece of legislation on the regulation of the payment services industry.
  • PSD2 applies to payment institutions, credit institutions, e-money institutions, central banks, government departments and local authorities.

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