Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 


No Enron/Worldcom Changes in Securities Markets


No Enron/Worldcom Changes in Securities Markets Act

ACT Justice Spokesman Stephen Franks deplored today's forced passage in urgency of all remaining stages of the Securities Markets & Institutions Bill.

"The Bill is a disgraceful Government stunt. In debate Minister Dalziel and former Commerce Minister Swain kept referring to Enron and Worldcom to justify it. Yet it has nothing to touch the causes of those debacles. Indeed, volatility and hype conditions could be exacerbated by the new Aussie style continuous disclosure law. The Bill was originally introduced as a smokescreen for Helen Clark's market manipulation of Air New Zealand's share price, which led to Australian derision of New Zealand's market.

"In Select Committee, ACT shamed the Government into reinstating the right for small shareholders to get independent legal advice in insider trading cases that the establishment would rather cover up. We reduced the stupidity of some provisions which ape Australian law, but this Bill is still a political stunt. It curries favour ineffectually with the Aussies. Because it is not a complete copy they are more likely to despise our law than if we were to openly pursue a less costly, simpler and tougher line. In practice this legislation will give New Zealand investors more, not less, reason to be suspicious about the integrity of the wheelers and dealers and the regulators in our markets.

"The Bill completes an unplanned partial nationalisation of securities exchanges. The rules of an exchange create the value of listing. And competition between exchanges, or the potential for competition, has been a vital constraint on exchange high-handedness, or bulletproofing in the rulebook.

Now the rules are ultimately the responsibility of the Minister, so the cynical political rule will govern: "cover your back and look after your votes, whatever it may cost the punters". Stock Exchange incompetence, as well as the Government's lack of capital market knowledge, led the Government more in that direction than any cunning plot, but the result is the same: Australianisation.

"There is no evidence that Australia has been more successful than New Zealand in jailing fraudsters or enforcing honesty in securities markets, though Australia has clearly paid far more for its huge rule books. We saw no evidence that anyone mistakes Australian law for international best practice.

"The long-overdue reform of insider trading law has been postponed for yet another review. Instead the Government tried to sneak in repeal of two provisions that make it feasible for small shareholders to chase big fish even when the authorities don't want that. The Bill still abolishes one of these two rights - last year's court decision that the Securities Commission must help by providing relevant information in its possession.

"Sensible provisions are submerged among unsound new law. Markets won't have reputation for honesty unless commitment to enforcement is shown by action, not multiplying the powers, discretions and nominal penalties in the regulators' hands," Mr Franks said.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>

ALSO:

Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>

ALSO:

Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>

ALSO:

With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>

ALSO:

Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news