This code of conduct details the expectations for contributors to EDHECinfra’s indices and should be read in conjunction with Article 15 of the EU Benchmarks Regulation1 (BMR) and the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2018/1645 of 13 July 2018.
Both requires benchmarks derived from contributed information to develop a code of conduct that specifies the contributor’s responsibilities with respect to the input data.
The code details the governance, data submission, record keeping, and data revision / error checking requirements that a contributor must follow to be included in EDHECinfra’s indices.
Data Submission and Record Keeping
The required data is described in EDHECinfra’s data standard. This details the information that is required to be provided by the contributor, the format it must take, and the periodicity of the contribution.
The contribution must be provided to a representative of EDHECinfra through the secure data portal and alternate arrangements such as contingency plans in circumstances of operational or technical difficulties will be agreed prior to the submission. Contributor will submit data in the agreed and required format described in EDHECinfra’s data standard.
The contributor will conduct the necessary reviews and validate the submission internally before providing the submission to EDHECinfra. Furthermore, in providing the submission it acknowledges that the information provided is complete, accurate, and consistent with the EDHECinfra’s specifications in the data standard.
Following the submission, the contributor is required to maintain records relating to the submission for a period of five (5) years, subject to applicable record-keeping requirements. Frequent and regular reviews in its systems and controls established on contribution of data is required, at least annually.
If EDHECinfra requests, the contributor will provide the documents used to provide a submission. These can include but are not limited to annual reports, financial models, valuation reports, and transaction contracts.
Contributor to keep records of any disciplinary action taken against any of its employees in respect of benchmark-related activities.
The contributor is required to delegate the task of preparing the submission to an employee with sufficient experience, authority, skills and knowledge and to receive adequate and relevant training to prepare and submit the data on behalf of the contributor and receive reports on data quality subsequent to submission. The Contributor is expected to perform a due diligence process to verify the submitter’s identity, qualifications and reputation, including whether the person has previously been excluded from submitting input data to a benchmark for reasons of misconduct.
The contributor is expected to develop policies and procedures that ensure that the organisation complies with this code of conduct, governing the contribution process and ensures that any submission has appropriate approvals to ensure data integrity.
All parties that provide input to the submission must be identified with each submission.
Data Revision or Suspicious Submissions
Submitters are expected to conduct internal reviews before making a submission to EDHECinfra. These reviews are expected to identify any errors or anomalous reports and would lead to them being rejected.
All submissions are expected to provide supporting evidence if EDHECinfra requests when reviewing the integrity of the data.
Submitters are expected to have in place a robust compliance regime that allows for the reporting of any errors, suspicious behaviour or submissions. Any suspicious behaviour or submission must be reported to EDHECinfra in a timely manner upon discovery.
Use of Discretion
There must be policies in place for the contributor on use of discretion in its data submission. The contributor must ensure at least the following are established and recorded:
- the circumstances in which the contributor may exercise discretion;
- the employee/individual within the contributor's organisation who are permitted to exercise discretion;
- the internal controls that regulate the exercise of the contributor's discretion in accordance with its policies;
- the employee/individual within the contributor's organisation who are authorised to conduct an ex-post evaluation of the exercise of discretion.
Conflicts of Interest
As part of a robust compliance regime, the contributor is expected to maintain effective controls to identify and manage any apparent or perceived conflicts of interest in the data-submission process. These controls must include a policy that allows for employees of the contributor to raise concerns about apparent or perceived conflicts of interest without fear of retribution. Contributor to ensure that its employees involved in the submission process must be trained in all policies, procedures and controls relating to the identification, prevention and management of conflicts of interest.
The Contributor is expected to establish policies governing conflict of interest and shall include the following requirements:
- the process for identifying and managing conflicts of interest, including any internal escalation of conflicts of interest;
- steps to prevent, or minimise the risk of, conflicts of interest in the process for recruiting submitters;
- steps to prevent, or minimise the risk of, conflicts of interest arising from the contributor's management structure;
- establishment of a register of conflicts of interest to be used to record any conflicts of interest identified and any measures taken to manage them, together with requirements to keep the register up-to-date and to provide internal or external auditors with access to it.