Story image

Market regulators NZX and FMA defend disclosure by companies involved in 1080 threat

11 Mar 15

Market regulators, the NZX and the Financial Markets Authority, say they're confident the approach they took to disclosure of the 1080 contamination threat by listed companies involved was appropriate in the "unusual circumstances", but they will be checking for any suspected market manipulation or insider trading.

Under the NZX Main Board Rule and the Financial Markets Conduct Act listed companies are required to immediately disclose any "material information" concerning their businesses to NZX, unless an exception applies.

The NZX and FMA, in a joint written statement released this afternoon, said they consider that although the alleged threat was treated at all times as genuine by the Ministry for Primary Industries and the police, the nature of the information was maintained in confidence and not sufficiently definite to require earlier disclosure by the potentially affected parties.

Although information regarding the threat was known to specific individuals involved in investigating it, there has been no evidence the market in relation to the relevant issuers was materially influenced by false or misleading information.

And, in fact, the two regulators think the early release of information, which may have been imprecise or not cover all the facts, could have had an unintended adverse impact on trading in their shares.

"Such a release may have created, rather than avoided, the subsistence of a market influenced by potentially misleading information."

Once the NZX learnt that MPI intended holding a media briefing on the threat yesterday afternoon, it halted the securities of the Fonterra Cooperative Group, The A2 Milk Company, and Synlait Milk Limited along with the dairy futures and options traded on NZX's Derivatives market.

The halt allowed for a coordinated release by the parties involved.

As part of NZX's routine surveillance processes relating to price sensitive announcements, trading ahead of yesterday's announcements will be assessed in detail for any suspected market manipulation or insider trading, it said.

There has been mixed trading today in the shares of the three companies that had a trading halt yesterday with the Fonterra Shareholders' Fund unchanged at $5.80, A2 Milk down 3.7 percent to 52 cents per share. Shares in Synlait Milk slipped 0.3 percent to $2.89.

How blockchain will impact NZ’s economy
Distributed ledgers and blockchain are anticipated to provide a positive uplift to New Zealand’s economy.
25% of malicious emails still make it through to recipients
Popular email security programmes may fail to detect as much as 25% of all emails with malicious or dangerous attachments, a study from Mimecast says.
Human value must be put back in marketing - report
“Digital is now so widely adopted that its novelty has worn off. In their attempt to declutter, people are being more selective about which products and services they incorporate into their daily lives."
Wine firm uses AR to tell its story right on the bottle
A Central Otago wine company is using augmented reality (AR) and a ‘digital first’ strategy to change the way it builds its brand and engages with customers.
DigiCert conquers Google's distrust of Symantec certs
“This could have been an extremely disruptive event to online commerce," comments DigiCert CEO John Merrill. 
Protecting organisations against internal fraud
Most companies tend to take a basic approach that focuses on numbers and compliance, without much room for grey areas or negotiation.
Telesmart to deliver Cloud Calling for Microsoft Teams
The integration will allow Telesmart’s Cloud Calling for Microsoft Teams to natively enable external voice connectivity from within Teams collaborative workflow environment.
Jade Software & Ambit take chatbots to next level of AI
“Conversation Agents present a huge opportunity to increase customer and employee engagement in a cost-effective manner."