MNB suspends licence of Quaestor investment fund manager
The National Bank of Hungary (MN) suspended the investment fund management and portfolio management licence of Quaestor Befektetési Alapkezelő, and instructed the company to comply with the licensing conditions related to its owner holding a qualified majority within six months, Hungarian news agency MTI reported today.
However, in order to protect the interests of investors affected by the compensation of Quaestor bond holders, asset sales serving to provide coverage for redemption of the investment units and fulfilment of obligations related to the possibility of redemption are exempt from the suspension, a June 15 supplement to the original June 8 resolution on the suspension shows. The fund manager will have to send detailed report to the MNB on these activities.
The fund managerʼs owner holding a qualified majority, Quaestor Pénzügyi Tanácsadó, which is under liquidation, has irrevocably lost its professional reputation in the financial sector and can therefore have no good business reputation and cannot provide reliable and prudential control over its unit which is a condition of the licence, the MNB said in a statement, explaining the move.
Quaestor Alapkezelő cannot continue its fund management and portfolio management activity for a maximum of six months or until the conditions are restored (in this case, the ownership stake held by Quaestor Pénzügyi Tanácsadó is sold).
The MNBʼs recently closed investigation also established that Quaestor Alapkezelő does not ensure the proper management of conflicting tasks and responsibilities in accordance with the respective regulations. The fund manager must separate until August 31 these activities and responsibilities and to ensure the lawful performance of control functions relating to conflicts of interests.
The MNB noted that it had earlier initiated a series of on-site target audits against several operators of the Hungarian capital market with the aim to filter out and sanction the companies not managing client funds with the professional care required and in compliance with the regulations. Due to infringements found in the audits, the MNB took temporary measures already during the procedure and appointed an oversight commissioner to the company on November 4, 2015.
The fund manager and its owner are part of the Quaestor group. Quaestor brokerage failed last year after it was found to have sold some HUF 150 bln of unsanctioned bonds.
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