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Att utvärdera kreditvärderarna - om kreditvärderingsinstituts juridiska ansvar

Ulriksen, Sara LU (2011) JURM01 20102
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Den senaste finanskrisen har resulterat i krav på ett ökat juridiskt ansvar för kreditvärderingsinstitutens verksamhet. Uppsatsens redogörelse för omfattningen av den efterföljande amerikanska, gemenskapsrättsliga och svenska reglering har påvisat att marknadens tidigare självreglering nu har övergått till ett förändrat rättsläge. Uppsatsen syftar till att analysera möjligheterna att ålägga ett rättsligt ansvar för kreditvärderingar av strukturerade finansiella instrument, utfärdade i Sverige.

Det är främst brottsbalkens bestämmelser om bedrägeri och svindleri som får verkan vid kreditvärderingsinstituts straffrättsliga ansvar. Ett straffrättsligt ansvar på sådana grunder kan dock endast aktualiseras vid mycket speciella omständigheter.... (More)
Den senaste finanskrisen har resulterat i krav på ett ökat juridiskt ansvar för kreditvärderingsinstitutens verksamhet. Uppsatsens redogörelse för omfattningen av den efterföljande amerikanska, gemenskapsrättsliga och svenska reglering har påvisat att marknadens tidigare självreglering nu har övergått till ett förändrat rättsläge. Uppsatsen syftar till att analysera möjligheterna att ålägga ett rättsligt ansvar för kreditvärderingar av strukturerade finansiella instrument, utfärdade i Sverige.

Det är främst brottsbalkens bestämmelser om bedrägeri och svindleri som får verkan vid kreditvärderingsinstituts straffrättsliga ansvar. Ett straffrättsligt ansvar på sådana grunder kan dock endast aktualiseras vid mycket speciella omständigheter. En vårdslös kreditvärdering utgör inte i nuläget, och troligtvis inte i framtiden, grund för en svensk domstol att ålägga en straffrättslig påföljd.

Amerikanska SEC kan utfärda civilrättsliga sanktioner mot institut skyldiga till vårdslös kreditvärdering, förutsatt att kreditvärderingen ifråga kan anses ha en betydande och förutsägbar påverkan på den amerikanska marknaden. Europeiska ESMA har exklusiv befogenhet att utfärda civilrättsliga sanktioner gentemot ett institut som gör sig skyldigt till en vårdslös kreditvärdering och därmed bryter mot förordningens bestämmelser. Även svenska domstolar har rätt att utdöma ett civilrättsligt ansvar gentemot instituten, förutsatt att ett sådant ansvar stödjer sig på svensk lag och svenska, allmänna rättsprinciper.

Ett inomobligatoriskt civilrättsligt ansvar mellan kreditvärderingsinstitut och investerare är uteslutet på grund av avsaknaden av avtalsförhållande parterna emellan. Däremot föreligger inomobligatoriska skyldigheter mellan institut och finansierande emittent. Mellan kreditvärderingsinstitut och investerare skulle snarare ett utomobligatoriskt civilrättsligt ansvar kunna aktualiseras, grundat på regler om professionsansvar. Svensk rätts princip om avtalsfrihet, särskilt i kommersiella förhållanden, innebär dock att kreditvärderingsinstitutens ansvarsfriskrivningar i nuläget får anses ha rättsverkan åtminstone i förhållande till emittenter. Däremot har inte instituten möjlighet att friskriva sig från den europeiska förordningen. En utveckling av en ”god kreditvärderingssed” på området skulle innebära att möjligheterna att ålägga institut ett civilrättsligt ansvar skulle öka, både i förhållande till emittent och till investerare. Dessutom skulle en sådan standard ytterligare beskära utrymmet för ansvarsfriskrivningar.

Kreditvärderingsinstitutens betydande inflytande på de globala finansmarknaderna kommer, förr eller senare, att resultera i ett skärpt rättsligt ansvar. (Less)
Abstract
The recent financial crisis has resulted in increased demands to facilitate a rating of the raters. This paper’s analysis of the substantial regulatory amendments in the US, EU and Sweden indicates that the legal position has been altered. The paper aims at exploring the possibilities to apply accountability for a credit rating of structured finance, originated in Sweden.

A credit rating agency’s criminal liability may potentially arise based upon sections of the Swedish Penal Code (Sw. brottsbalken) relating to fraud. However, case law illustrates that criminal liability may only arise under specific circumstances. Therefore, the current, as well as the probable forthcoming, Swedish legal position does not provide a cause of action... (More)
The recent financial crisis has resulted in increased demands to facilitate a rating of the raters. This paper’s analysis of the substantial regulatory amendments in the US, EU and Sweden indicates that the legal position has been altered. The paper aims at exploring the possibilities to apply accountability for a credit rating of structured finance, originated in Sweden.

A credit rating agency’s criminal liability may potentially arise based upon sections of the Swedish Penal Code (Sw. brottsbalken) relating to fraud. However, case law illustrates that criminal liability may only arise under specific circumstances. Therefore, the current, as well as the probable forthcoming, Swedish legal position does not provide a cause of action for criminal liability for a reckless credit rating.

The US SEC has extraterritorial jurisdiction over civil law accountability for reckless credit ratings with a significant and foreseeable effect in USA. The European ESMA has exclusive jurisdiction over civil law accountability for reckless credit ratings, with a cause of action related to the EU regulation. Swedish courts have jurisdiction over civil law accountability, provided that the cause of action is based upon Swedish law.

A contractual responsibility based upon the law of damages can, due to the lack of contractual relationship, not arise between a credit rating agency and an investor. However, there is a contractual liability arising out of the relationship with the issuer of the obligation undergoing rating. Nevertheless, the laws of damages gives arise to indemnity liability. Consequently, a liability between a credit rating agency and an investor based upon non-contractual obligations relating to expert liability is more likely. However, the obligation to indemnify is limited by the credit rating agencies’ disclaimers of liability. Swedish law includes a solid principle of freedom of contract, particularly when neither party is under consumer protection. Therefore, credit rating agencies’ disclaimers of liability currently have legal effect at least towards issuers. However, the credit rating agencies are prohibited from using disclaimers of liability from the EU regulation. A development of generally accepted principles in the area of credit ratings would increase the possibility of applying civil law accountability on credit rating agencies, in relation to both issuer and investor. Furthermore, applying generally accepted principles in the area of credit ratings would decrease the legal effect of disclaimers of liability.

Eventually, credit rating agencies’ major influence on the global financial markets is likely to result in increased accountability. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Ulriksen, Sara LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
Rating the Raters - Legal Liabilities of Credit Rating Agencies
course
JURM01 20102
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Bankrätt, Finansrätt, Kreditvärderingsinstitut, Finanskris
language
Swedish
id
1770479
date added to LUP
2011-02-01 14:36:42
date last changed
2011-02-01 14:36:42
@misc{1770479,
  abstract     = {The recent financial crisis has resulted in increased demands to facilitate a rating of the raters. This paper’s analysis of the substantial regulatory amendments in the US, EU and Sweden indicates that the legal position has been altered. The paper aims at exploring the possibilities to apply accountability for a credit rating of structured finance, originated in Sweden. 

A credit rating agency’s criminal liability may potentially arise based upon sections of the Swedish Penal Code (Sw. brottsbalken) relating to fraud. However, case law illustrates that criminal liability may only arise under specific circumstances. Therefore, the current, as well as the probable forthcoming, Swedish legal position does not provide a cause of action for criminal liability for a reckless credit rating.

The US SEC has extraterritorial jurisdiction over civil law accountability for reckless credit ratings with a significant and foreseeable effect in USA. The European ESMA has exclusive jurisdiction over civil law accountability for reckless credit ratings, with a cause of action related to the EU regulation. Swedish courts have jurisdiction over civil law accountability, provided that the cause of action is based upon Swedish law.

A contractual responsibility based upon the law of damages can, due to the lack of contractual relationship, not arise between a credit rating agency and an investor. However, there is a contractual liability arising out of the relationship with the issuer of the obligation undergoing rating. Nevertheless, the laws of damages gives arise to indemnity liability. Consequently, a liability between a credit rating agency and an investor based upon non-contractual obligations relating to expert liability is more likely. However, the obligation to indemnify is limited by the credit rating agencies’ disclaimers of liability. Swedish law includes a solid principle of freedom of contract, particularly when neither party is under consumer protection. Therefore, credit rating agencies’ disclaimers of liability currently have legal effect at least towards issuers. However, the credit rating agencies are prohibited from using disclaimers of liability from the EU regulation. A development of generally accepted principles in the area of credit ratings would increase the possibility of applying civil law accountability on credit rating agencies, in relation to both issuer and investor. Furthermore, applying generally accepted principles in the area of credit ratings would decrease the legal effect of disclaimers of liability. 

Eventually, credit rating agencies’ major influence on the global financial markets is likely to result in increased accountability.},
  author       = {Ulriksen, Sara},
  keyword      = {Bankrätt,Finansrätt,Kreditvärderingsinstitut,Finanskris},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Att utvärdera kreditvärderarna - om kreditvärderingsinstituts juridiska ansvar},
  year         = {2011},
}