NETHERLANDS - The ban on short-selling of Dutch equities will be replaced by a temporary but mandatory registration of short positions in Dutch financial institutions.

The behavioural supervisor Authority Financial Markets explained that during a consultation, market players made it clear that short-selling is important for the trade and the proper functioning of markets.

Eumedion, the platform for institutional investors, had in January called for the lifting the ban on short-selling, arguing its effectiveness was uncertain.

In the opinion of the AFM, however, registering significant short positions is necessary "as the present market situation still requires alertness".

"The duty to report allows us to monitor short positions and to make connections between short positions and manipulative strategies visible," the watchdog said.

In order to avoid administrative costs, players only need to disclose the aggregate of net short positions which reach or exceed 0.25% - and every additional 0.10% - of their overall positions, the AFM said.

The duty to report will come into force on 1 June, and will last until 1 January 2010.

The supervisor announced it will pursue increased transparency for the long-term and will aim at international convergence of future measures.

The AFM introduced a ban on short-selling in September last year, and has extended the ban several times.

The UK financial watchdog FSA has already lifted a ban on short-selling in January.

The AFM indicated that it expects remaining measures elsewhere in Europe against short-selling to be lifted soon.

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