The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has finally released its official opinion regarding the 2-month ban on the short selling of Wirecard AG (Wirecard) shares instituted by the Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFin).
The ban was based on the Short Selling Regulation as an emergency measure, which became effective at 06:00 CET today before the trading session begun and will remain in effect up to 18 April 2019.
The ban is temporary in nature, but has a wide ranging effect on Wirecard shares as it prohibits any direct or indirect short selling transactions on the company’s shares, irrespective of the medium through which such transactions are conducted.
However, the ban does not cover market making activities or short selling as a form of hedging existing subscription rights and convertible bond holdings.
According to ESMA, the unstable conditions surrounding Wirecard shares pose a threat to investor confidence in Germany’s markets, and that the ban is warranted.