[UPDATE] Turkish financial watchdog revokes stock market abuse decision

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Traders work at their desks on the floor of the Borsa Istanbul in Istanbul on May 22, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / OZAN KOSE

Turkey’s Capital Markets Board (SPK) on Sunday revoked a decision to partially suspend a directive related to insider share trading, which was announced in its weekly bulletin, Reuters reported.

It did not give a reason for the move in Friday’s statement but the board said on Sunday the decision was taken in response to market demand and was aimed at supporting companies’ share buyback programs and investors.

“The decision was taken to cancel this ruling … given the speculation and negative perceptions which arose after it was announced,” the statement said after a board meeting on Sunday.

“It was assessed that this would prevent the emergence of the desired benefits to the market of the decision,” it added.

Sunday’s statement said the decision only referred to transactions that were not a crime. Insider trading is a crime under Turkey’s capital markets law, and the decision does not amount to any change in this, it added.

According to the decision, the SPK had said that until the end of August share purchases on Borsa Istanbul by people party to the relevant company’s internal information, or by those close to them, would not be subject to a stock market abuse directive, Reuters reported on Friday.

In a brief statement, it said it had decided such purchases would not be subject to an article from a 2014 directive regarding acts of market abuse.

The relevant article in the 2014 directive, published at the time in the country’s Official Gazette, says, “Trading in capital market instruments by people party to issuers’ internal information or by their spouses, children or people living in the same house is assessed to be an act of market abuse.”

No further details were given on the move, and nobody from the SPK was immediately available to comment, Reuters added.

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