Financial regulator the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) announced this Wednesday that it has extended its COVID-19 relief for certain capital raisings and financial advice, as the long-term impact of the pandemic continues and remains uncertain.
The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the world, and without a vaccine, it is not clear when the virus will cease to be a threat. Over the course of the pandemic, ASIC has implemented a number of measures to ease the burden on financial institutions.
According to the Australian regulator, the capital raisings relief aims to assist listed entities affected by COVID-19 to raise capital in a faster and cheaper manner, without undermining investor protection. The relief measure was originally announced back on 31st March 2020
“ASIC will continue to monitor the appropriateness of these temporary relief measures in light of the impact of COVID-19 on capital markets and on the demand for financial advice. If ASIC considers it appropriate to end the relief before the expiration dates or to further extend it, ASIC will give sufficient notice before any early repeal or extension is implemented,” the regulator said today.
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Among the numerous relief measures introduced by the Australian authority, it extended the deadline for unlisted entities to lodge their financial reports by one month for balance dates from 31 December 2019 to 31 March 2020.
ASIC Balances Relief Measures with Vigilance
Despite providing relief measures for market participants, ASIC has remained vigilant in its efforts to monitor the markets and create a fair and transparent financial industry within the country.
As Finance Magnates reported, ASIC stepped up its market supervision to ensure its markets remain fair and orderly, in order to ensure that investors are appropriately informed and protected against market abuse.
Fraudsters have been taking advantage of the global pandemic. In June, the Aussie watchdog highlighted that the number of reports of misconduct it has received from March to May this year has increased by 20 per cent when measured against the same period of the previous year.