On September 14, 2012, the Italian Securities Commission ("CONSOB") removed the "covered" short selling ban applicable to shares of Italian banks and insurance companies, originally adopted through CONSOB resolution No. 18283 dated July 23, 2012 and extended through CONSOB resolution No. 18298 dated July 27, 2012.
These resolutions, introduced to address rising market volatility and downward pressure on share prices, required a person that sells shares of Italian banks and insurance companies must (i) own the shares being sold at the time of entering into the transaction and (ii) hold such shares from the moment of their sale until the date of the settlement of the transaction. The "covered" short selling ban therefore introduced more restrictive short selling rules applicable to financial institutions.
All shares listed on Italian regulated markets still remain subject to two restrictive measures CONSOB introduced in 2011 in anticipation of the implementation of EU Regulation No. 236/2012 of the European Parliament and the Council of March 14, 2012 (which will enter into force on November 1, 2012) including:
(1) the "naked" (or uncovered) short selling ban; and
(2) the transparency measures for net short positions.
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