Conflicts of interest policy related to the production of investment research reports
J&E Davy Unlimited Company (“Davy”) is a member of Bank of Ireland Group. Davy currently offers a comprehensive range of stockbroking and related financial services to retail and professional clients. In addition to these services, other members of the Davy Group offer corporate finance and broking services to clients. This involves the provision of a full capital markets service i.e., advice on flotations, secondary offerings, disposals, mergers and acquisitions, share buybacks, refinancing etc. The firm also acts as sponsor to a number of companies listed on Euronext Dublin and the London Stock Exchange to which we provide transactional and day-to-day advice on the application of the relevant Listing Rules.
Identification and management of potential conflicts
Due to the fact that Bank of Ireland Group and Davy offers such a wide range of financial services, it is inevitable that a number of potential or actual conflicts exist.
The senior management within Davy ensures that any actual or potential conflicts that may exist are kept under review on an ongoing basis and that appropriate controls are in place to identify and manage any such conflicts. This document is not intended to provide a comprehensive account of the controls and procedures in place to manage any such conflicts. However, it does seek to outline the main controls and organisational arrangements in place for managing any potential conflicts that may exist in relation to the production of investment research reports ("research reports") .
Reporting line of Research analysts
Each analyst within the Research department reports directly to the Head of Research. The Corporate Finance and Corporate Broking departments have no responsibility for the management of analysts.
Ethical walls/physical separation of the Research department
Davy operates a strict Ethical Walls policy to ensure that there are effective physical and logical barriers in place to prevent the passing of certain information. There are robust procedures and controls in place to safeguard the Ethical Walls in place between Davy and Davy Corporate Finance Limited Unlimited Company DCF). As DCF and our Research department are both located at 49/50 Dawson Street, there is a particular awareness of the requirement to demonstrate the strength of the Ethical Walls in place between those two entities.
Physical access to DCF is restricted to DCF staff only.
Any information possessed by DCF on a company that it advises is segregated behind the Ethical Wall.
Transactions or potential transactions in which DCF is involved are discussed, even within the department, strictly on a ‘need to know’ basis and, as is standard practice in the industry, code names are used to identify projects.
DCF and the Research department do not have access to each other's computer systems.
Remuneration of Research analysts
The remuneration of Corporate Finance personnel, on the one hand, and Research and Trading personnel, on the other hand, is entirely independent and neither division is incentivised on the basis of the performance of the other. The Head of Research is responsible for determining the remuneration of each analyst, and this is linked to the overall performance of Davy and, in particular, the Institutional Equity division. The overall performance of Davy also includes that of the Corporate Finance department. However, analyst remuneration is in no way linked to any individual transaction. The evaluation and determination of compensation for Research analysts are completely separate from the investment banking business. In addition, each analyst certifies that no part of his or her compensation was, is or will be directly or indirectly related to the specific recommendations or views expressed within a research report.
Personal account dealing
The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II 2014/65/EU (MiFID II) and Market Abuse Regulation 596/2014/EU preclude all activities by employees in carrying out personal transactions that may give rise to a conflict of interest or are undertaken with access to inside information. Davy operates a strict Personal Account Dealing Policy to regulate the conduct of personal accounts by its employees. Research analysts are required to obtain pre-authorisation by senior management for staff trades. This authorisation will not be given if there is a risk that to do so could lead to potential conflicts of interest. Research analysts are not permitted to trade contrary to a recommendation  and must not trade in the securities of a company that they cover where drafting a piece of investment research on that company. Staff are permitted to deal in securities with a view to medium and long-term investment only and short-term speculation is not permitted. The Compliance department within Davy is responsible for monitoring staff dealing on an ongoing basis. Furthermore, where an analyst holds securities or another financial instrument of an issuer covered by them, this fact will be disclosed in the recommendation.
Involvement (if any) in non-research activities
There are strict procedures in place within Davy to ensure that an analyst is not involved in any activity that could affect his/her ability to provide an impartial assessment of the subject securities or issuers covered by that analyst.
Investors should be aware that Davy or a related company within Bank of Ireland Group may provide investment banking services or may have acted as lead manager/co-lead manager to a company covered by the Research department.
Principal trading within Davy
From time to time, Davy or a related company within Bank of Ireland Group may hold a principal position in the securities and/or other financial instruments of a company covered by the Research department. There are controls in place to ensure that those responsible for taking proprietary positions within Davy do not have access to any research reports prior to publication. We also have a dedicated team within our Institutional Settlements department, which is responsible solely for settlement of trades dealt by our proprietary trading book. Should an instance arise where Davy or a related company within Bank of Ireland Group has a holding that exceeds 5% of the issued share capital of a company covered by Research, this will be disclosed within the research report. This shareholding includes proprietary positions and discretionary holdings. Details of these holdings are available on www.davy.ie/RegulatoryDisclosures.
Timing of publication
The Research department determines the timing of the publication of any research report. The Head of Research is responsible for determining which companies are covered by the Research department. Davy does not have an agreement with any covered company specifically for the production of research reports, i.e., ‘paid-for research’.
Research reports may be disclosed to the companies that are the subject of Davy Research in advance of publication in order to correct any factual inaccuracies. We are satisfied that this does not compromise the research report's objectivity.
Termination of coverage on an issuer
Davy has a detailed procedure in place to manage the various dealing and other restrictions that may apply in the event that we are a connected/concert party to an offeror or offeree company. These procedures ensure that any research reports related to the issuer are discontinued and any previous research reports published on the website are removed.
All analysts are made fully aware of both Davy internal rules related to the management of conflicts of interest and also their obligations in this area, as outlined in the ISE Rules and the Market Abuse Regulation 596/2014/EU. Davy has an internal set of guidelines that all analysts have been provided with in order to assist them in understanding these obligations. Each analyst must certify that he/she is fully aware of his or her obligations on an annual basis. Each analyst must also certify that the views expressed within the research recommendation accurately reflect his or her personal views about the securities or issuers referred to in the research recommendation.
 Davy produces ‘recommendations’ within the definition of the Market Abuse Regulations 596/2014/EU and ‘investment research’ within the definition of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2017/565 of 25 April 2016.
 Other than in exceptional circumstances as provided for in MiFID II.
Where any of the disclosures referred to in this Conflicts of Interest policy are disproportionate to the length of the research report, then these disclosures shall instead be made available on the Davy website.
A summary of Davy’s Conflicts of Interest policy is available at www.davy.ie/legal/policies.
Last updated: June 2022