Lawmakers backed tougher European Union curbs on high-frequency trading and limits on commodity speculation as part of a push to toughen the bloc’s financial market rulebook.
European Parliament legislators, voting in Brussels today, also called for the European Securities and Markets Authority to be equipped with powers to ban financial products that might pose a threat to confidence or stability
The rules will “protect taxpayers and consumers,” Markus Ferber, the lawmaker leading work on the dossier, said after the vote by members of the assembly’s economic and monetary affairs committee.
High-frequency trading in stocks came under increased regulatory scrutiny after the so-called flash crash in May 2010, during which the Dow Jones Industrial Average briefly lost almost 1,000 points. Companies active in such trading have warned that interfering with their strategies would raise investor costs and harm financial stability.