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The following posts provide a snapshot of the principal U.S., European and global financial regulatory developments of interest to banks, investment firms, broker-dealers, market infrastructures, asset managers and corporates.

  • EU Recommendations for Alignment of the EU Derivatives Trading and Clearing Obligations
    02/07/2020

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has published a final report and recommendations on aligning the trading obligation under the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation with recent changes made to the clearing obligation under the European Markets Infrastructure Regulation by the EMIR Refit Regulation. ESMA's report to the European Commission will support the Commission's report to the European Parliament and Council that is due by December 18, 2020.

    Read more.
    TOPICS: DerivativesMiFID II
  • Further Consultation on Pre-Cessation Fallbacks Announced
    02/05/2020

    The International Swaps and Derivatives Association has announced that it will be issuing later in February 2020 a further consultation on how to implement pre-cessation fallbacks. A “pre-cessation” trigger in derivative contracts would cause LIBOR-based contracts to fall back to an alternative reference rate in the event that the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority deemed LIBOR no longer to be representative. 

    Read more.
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Consults on Pre-Trade Transparency Regime
    02/03/2020

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has launched a consultation to collect the views of market participants on the pre-trade transparency regime applicable to systematic internalizers for “non-equity instruments” (which include bonds, structured-finance products, emission allowances and derivatives) under the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation. A consultation on the transparency regime for equity and equity-like instruments has been launched separately.

    Read more.
  • Bank for International Settlement Says Buy-Side Firms Need to Adopt Global FX Code
    01/30/2020

    The Chair of the Markets Committee of the Bank for International Settlements has written to the Chair of the Global Foreign Exchange Committee providing a brief assessment of the effectiveness of the FX Global Code. The FX Global Code was first published by the GFXC in May 2017. It superseded and substantively updated existing guidance for participants in FX markets previously provided by the Non-Investment Products (NIPs) Code. The Code comprises a set of global principles of good practice for the FX market, covering a broad range of areas, including ethics, governance, execution, information-sharing, risk management, compliance, trade confirmation and settlement. The Global FX Committee committed to reviewing the code every three years.

    In the letter, the BIS Markets Committee sets out its assessment of and recommendations for improving the effectiveness of the FX Global Code. In particular, the Committee recommends that additional action is taken by the Global FX Committee to ensure that more of the large buy-side firms sign up to the Code.

    View the letter.
  • International Organization of Securities Commissions Priorities for 2020
    01/30/2020

    The International Organization of Securities Commissions has published its annual work program, setting out its priorities for 2020. IOSCO will continue to focus on the five areas identified by its Board in 2019 as well as one new issue. The areas of focus are:
    • Crypto-assets: following its consultation last year, in February 2020, IOSCO will publish a final report on issues, risks and regulatory considerations relating to crypto-asset trading platforms. IOSCO will also publish the outcome of its review of the regulatory risks relating to investment funds exposures to crypto-assets. Finally, a report will be issued in early 2020 on issues relating to Global Stablecoins.
    Read more.
  • UK Conduct Regulator Clarifies Rules on Publication of Non-Representative LIBOR
    01/20/2020

    The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority has responded to a request from the International Swaps and Derivatives Association for clarification on the expected timeframes for publication of a non-representative LIBOR. The FCA (in conjunction with the Financial Stability Board) had previously requested ISDA to introduce “pre-cessation” triggers in its derivative contracts, causing LIBOR-based contracts to fall back to an alternative reference rate in the event that the FCA deemed LIBOR to no longer be representative. ISDA requested clarity about the length of the period during which such a non-representative LIBOR might be published prior to its total cessation.

    Read more.
  • UK Regulators Push For More Action on LIBOR Transition
    01/16/2020

    The Bank of England, U.K. Prudential Regulation Authority, U.K. Financial Conduct Authority and the Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates have published a set of documents outlining priorities and milestones for 2020 on LIBOR transition.

    Read more.
  • International Swaps and Derivatives Association Publishes FAQs on IBOR Fallback Rate Adjustments
    01/10/2020

    The International Swaps and Derivatives Association has published a set of Frequently Asked Questions on Interbank Offered Rate Fallback Rate adjustments. The FAQs are part of ISDA's preparations for the sweeping changes being made to global interest rate benchmarks, which may see a transition from IBORs to overnight risk free rates. Parties to derivatives contracts that currently reference IBORs are being encouraged to include contractual fallback provisions providing for adjusted RFRs that could replace IBORs if they are discontinued before a contract is concluded. RFRs are structurally different to IBORs, hence why the RFRs must be adjusted in order to be incorporated into contracts that currently reference IBORs.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • European Systemic Risk Board Recommends Options for Addressing Procyclicality in Derivatives Markets and Securities Financing Transactions
    01/09/2020

    The European Systemic Risk Board has published a report on mitigating the procyclicality of margins and haircuts in derivatives markets and securities financing transactions. The report assesses the systemic risks arising from procyclicality associated with margin and haircut practices and makes recommendations for addressing the risks. 

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • International Swaps and Derivatives Association Publishes Guide on Cross-Border Application of Margin Rules
    01/06/2020

    The International Swaps and Derivatives Association has published a guide on the cross-border application of margin rules established under the U.S., EU and Japanese regimes for uncleared derivatives. While most jurisdictions base their margin rules on the framework established by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision and the International Organization of Securities Commissions, there is still scope for differences to arise under national regimes. The guide provides an overview of the margin rules in each of the three jurisdictions, focussing on the cross-border and substituted compliance elements. It also includes a series of charts showing the application and availability of substituted compliance under each regime.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Publishes Clarifications on Reporting of Securities Financing Transactions
    01/06/2020

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has published a final report and guidelines on reporting under the Securities Financing Transaction Regulations, together with amended SFTR validation rules and a statement on Legal Entity Identifiers. The SFTR requires all securities financing transactions to be reported to EU-recognized trade repositories. SFTs involve the use of securities to borrow cash or other high investment-grade securities and include repurchase transactions, securities lending and sell/buy backs.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • New EU Regulation Enhances European Supervisory Authorities' Powers
    12/27/2019

    An EU Regulation has been published amending the European Supervisory Authorities' powers under various pieces of EU legislation. The Regulation grants ESMA additional powers to monitor market data and authorize benchmark administrators under the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation and the Benchmarks Regulation, respectively. It also amends the legislation founding the European Banking Authority, the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority and the European Securities and Markets Authority, granting them additional powers to facilitate their supervisory duties. The Regulation will enter into force on December 30, 2019. The provisions regarding ESMA's enhanced supervisory powers over market data and benchmarks will apply from January 1, 2022. All other provisions regarding the European Supervisory Authorities' enhanced powers will apply from January 1, 2020.

    Read more.
  • European Supervisory Authorities Publish New Risk Mitigation Technique Standards for OTC Derivative Contracts
    12/23/2019

    The European Supervisory Authorities have published joint draft Regulatory Technical Standards amending the existing EU risk mitigation techniques for uncleared OTC derivatives, together with a joint statement on the introduction of fallbacks in OTC derivative contracts and the requirement to exchange collateral. The draft RTS amend existing bilateral margin requirements made under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation, in line with certain clarifications made to the related international framework by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision and the International Organization of Securities Commissions. The draft RTS were originally published on December 5, 2019, but have been republished with one additional amendment. The Final Report has been submitted to the European Commission for endorsement.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • EU Temporary Equivalence and Recognition for UK CCPs Extended in Event of a No-Deal Brexit
    12/23/2019

    An amended temporary equivalence decision on the regulatory framework applicable to central counterparties in the U.K. and Northern Ireland has been published in the Official Journal of the European Union. The decision amends the existing EU equivalence decision, which applies from the date that the U.K. leaves the EU in the event that no withdrawal agreement has been agreed, and ends on March 30, 2020. The amended decision extends the period of equivalence to one year following a U.K. no-deal exit from the EU and will apply from December 24, 2019. It would not apply in the event that the Withdrawal Agreement is ratified by both sides.

    Read more.
  • Financial Stability Board Publishes Feedback to Derivatives and Trading Portfolios’ Solvent Wind-Down Consultation
    12/20/2019

    The Financial Stability Board has published a statement summarizing the feedback it received to its June 2019 consultation on the solvent wind-down of derivatives and trading portfolios. The consultation sought feedback on a series of questions regarding existing wind-down practices that may be used as a recovery option for global systemically important institutions that find themselves under stress. The FSB intended to consider publishing guidance on solvent wind-down planning depending on the responses elicited by the consultation.

    Read more.
  • Consultation on Credit Adjustment Spread Methodologies for Fallbacks in Cash Products Referencing GBP LIBOR
    12/19/2019

    The Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates has opened a consultation on credit adjustment spread methodologies for fallbacks in cash products referencing GBP LIBOR. The consultation focuses on cash products, including, but not limited to, syndicated loans, floating rate notes, retail loans, bilateral corporate loans and securitizations.  It only covers GBP LIBOR and credit adjustment spreads to be applied to a SONIA-derived rate. Responses to the consultation can be submitted until February 6, 2020.

    Read more.
  • International Swaps and Derivatives Association Consults on Fallbacks Based on Alternative Risk-Free Rates For Derivatives Referencing EUR Libor and EURIBOR
    12/18/2019

    The International Swaps and Derivatives Association has launched a consultation in which it proposes to amend its standard documentation to implement fallbacks based on alternative risk-free rates for certain key Interbank Offered Rates - EUR LIBOR and EURIBOR. ISDA states that the back-ups will apply if the relevant IBOR is permanently discontinued, based on defined triggers. Responses to the consultation should be submitted to ISDA by January 21, 2020.
    Read more.
  • UK Prudential Regulatory Authority Responds on Prudential Impediments for Banks Arising from the LIBOR Transition
    12/18/2019

    The Prudential Regulation Authority has published a letter addressed to the Chair of the Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates. The letter responds to the Working Group's letter in October 2019 requesting regulatory forbearance or clarification from regulators on the impact that the LIBOR transition is likely to have on the prudential requirements for banks. The main issues raised by the Working Group include: (i) the potential for certain capital instruments to no longer qualify as regulatory capital; (ii) the potential for securitizations and MREL-eligible instruments to be considered as "new contracts" as a result of changes to contractual terms, leading to the need to insert bail-in or other bank recovery contractual terms; and (iii) that many banks will need to obtain regulatory approvals for alterations to the models used to determine their regulatory capital arising from their exposures and risks.

    Read more.
  • Financial Stability Board Calls for Sustained Efforts to Migrate From LIBOR
    12/18/2019

    The Financial Stability Board has published a progress report on reforms to major interest rate benchmarks. The report provides the FSB's annual update on progress taken by the official sector and market participants to move from interbank offered rates to overnight risk-free rates by the end of 2021 in line with the FSB's 2014 recommendations. The FSB highlights that the continued reliance by global financial markets on LIBOR poses significant financial stability risks and urges all participants to continue with their efforts to transition to the alternative risk-free rates. The FSB also warns regulated firms to expect increased examination from regulators of their efforts to transition as the end of 2021 approaches.

    View the report.
  • Financial Stability Board Publishes 2020 Work Program
    12/17/2019

    The Financial Stability Board has published its work program for 2020. The FSB confirms that it will continue to monitor developments to identify and manage new and emerging risks, work to finalize the outstanding components of the post-crisis reforms and assess the implementation of reforms as well as their effects. Key areas of focus will be:
    • LIBOR transition: the FSB will monitor implementation of the benchmark reforms and report on outstanding issues.
    • Global stablecoins: the FSB will launch a consultation on global stablecoins in April 2020.
    • Global payment systems: the FSB will work with other international bodies to develop and deliver a roadmap for using digital innovations to improve global cross-border payments.
    • FinTech: the FSB will report on the perspective of emerging market and developing economies.

    View the FSB work program for 2020.
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Publishes Information on Pending Applications for Benchmark Administrators
    12/13/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has published a list of the entities that are awaiting their national regulator’s approval for authorization and registration as EU benchmark administrators. Under the EU Benchmark Regulation, existing EU and third country benchmark administrators are entitled to apply for authorization to continue as administrators.

    Read more.
  • Proposed EU Procedural Rules for Penalties Imposed on Third-Country CCPs, Trade Repositories and Credit Rating Agencies
    12/13/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has launched a consultation on proposed procedural rules for penalties imposed on third-country CCPs, trade repositories and credit rating agencies. Responses are invited by January 18, 2020. ESMA intends to finalize its technical advice by the end of Q1 2020.

    Read more.
  • EMIR 2.2 Regulation on the Authorization and Recognition of CCPs Published
    12/12/2019

    A new Regulation amending the European Market Infrastructure Regulation has been published in the Official Journal of the European Union, introducing changes to the procedures and authorities involved in the authorization of central counterparties and the requirements for the recognition of third-country CCPs. The Regulation, known as “EMIR 2.2”, is part of the EU’s push to enhance the regulation of CCPs amid concerns regarding potential CCP failures given their increasing systemic importance. 

    Read more.
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Publishes Annual Report on Regulators’ Supervisory Measures under EMIR
    12/09/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has published its annual report on the supervisory measures and penalties imposed by national regulators in respect of certain provisions under the European Markets Infrastructure Regulation. The relevant provisions govern: (i) the clearing obligation; (ii) the reporting obligation; (iii) non-financial counterparties; and (iv) the risk mitigation techniques under EMIR.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • International Swaps and Derivatives Association Seeks Clarity on Implications of Potential "Non-Representative" LIBOR Statement
    12/04/2019

    The International Swaps and Derivatives Association has published a letter in which it responds to the Financial Stability Board's November 15, 2019 letter on pre-cessation triggers. The co-Chairs of the FSB's Official Sector Steering Group requested ISDA to include a "pre-cessation trigger" alongside the cessation trigger in its standard language in derivatives contracts, via either definitions for new contracts or in a single protocol (without embedded optionality) for outstanding contracts. The pre-cessation trigger would cause a LIBOR-based contract to fall back to an alternative reference rate in the event that the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority, as the regulator of LIBOR, deemed that LIBOR was no longer representative.

    Read more.
  • UK Conduct Regulator Sets Out Conduct Expectations of Firms For LIBOR Transition
    11/19/2019

    The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority has published a statement on conduct risk during the LIBOR transition, which is due to be completed by the end of 2021. The statement is in the form of questions and answers and sets out the FCA's expectations of firms relating to governance and accountability, replacing LIBOR with alternative rates in existing contracts, offering new products with alternative rates, communicating with customers about the transition from LIBOR and best practice for firms investing on behalf of clients.

    View the FCA's statement.
  • Financial Stability Board’s LIBOR Steering Group Encourages ISDA to Roll Out Pre-Cessation Trigger
    11/15/2019

    The co-Chairs of the Financial Stability Board’s Official Sector Steering Group, whose work focuses on interest rate benchmarks that are deemed to play a critical role in the global financial system, have written to the International Swaps and Derivatives Association requesting that it includes a “pre-cessation trigger” alongside the cessation trigger in its standard language in derivatives contracts, via either definitions for new contracts or in a single protocol (without embedded optionality) for outstanding contracts. The pre-cessation trigger would cause a LIBOR-based contract to fall back to an alternative reference rate in the event that the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority, as the regulator of LIBOR, deemed that LIBOR was no longer representative. 

    Read more.
  • Working Group on Euro Risk-Free Rates Makes Recommendations for €STR Fall-Back Arrangements
    11/12/2019

    The European Central Bank has published a report by the working group on euro risk-free rates on €STR fall-back arrangements. The EU Benchmark Regulation requires regulated entities to have put in place written plans on the steps that they would take should a benchmark used in their contracts be materially amended or ceases. The Working Group recommends that instead of selecting an alternative rate, regulated entities should take into account the ECB's regular review of €STR's methodology and the policies and procedures for the possible cessation of €STR, together with the use of contractual fallbacks.

    View the report.
  • Final EMIR 2.2 Technical Advice Published
    11/11/2019

    Following its consultation earlier this year, the European Securities and Markets Authority has published final reports and the final technical advice on third-country CCP tiering, comparable compliance and fees under draft revisions to the European Market Infrastructure Regulation, known as EMIR 2.2. EMIR 2.2 will change the requirements for the supervision of both EU and third-country CCPs, and includes the controversial formal EU "location policy" for CCPs. The technical advice will assist the Commission in preparing the final delegated legislation that will supplement the EMIR 2.2.

    Read more.
  • Working Group on Euro Risk-Free Rates Recommends Fallback Provisions Contracts Referencing EURIBOR
    11/06/2019

    The European Central Bank has published a report by the working group on euro risk-free rates providing high-level recommendations for fall-back provisions in contracts for cash products and derivatives transactions referencing EURIBOR. The recommendations are not legally binding and market participants can decide whether, and to the extent to which, they wish to adopt them. EURIBOR were identified as critical benchmarks for the purposes of the EU Benchmarks Regulation  and the methodology for calculating EURIBOR has been revised to be Benchmark Regulation-compliant, to be implemented by the end of 2019.

    Read more.
  • EU Consultation on Changes to Position Limits for Commodity Derivatives
    11/05/2019

    Following its Call for Evidence issued in May this year, the European Securities and Markets Authority has launched a consultation on proposed revisions to the legal framework for position limits and position management in commodity derivatives. The position limits regime was introduced by the revised Markets in Financial Instruments Directive. MiFID II requires the European Commission to report to the European Parliament and the Council on the impact of the application of position limits and position management on liquidity, market abuse and orderly pricing and settlement conditions in commodity derivatives markets. ESMA must provide the Commission with advice regarding this new regime to support the Commission's preparation of the report, including any recommendations for changing the legislative requirements. Responses to ESMA's consultation should be submitted by January 8, 2020.

    Read more.
    TOPICS: DerivativesMiFID II
  • EU Recommendations on Financial Accounting Implications of Transition to €STR
    11/05/2019

    The European Central Bank has published a report by the working group on euro risk-free rates on the financial accounting implications of the transition from EONIA to €STR and the introduction of €STR-based fallbacks for EURIBOR. 

    Read more.
  • Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates Asks Regulators to Act on Prudential Impediments to LIBOR Transition
    10/23/2019

    The Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates has written to the Prudential Regulation Authority raising issues in the banking prudential regulation regime that, in its view, will require changes and/or regulatory forbearance if a smooth transition from LIBOR to SONIA is to be achieved. Although the letter focuses on the U.K. regime, the issues are likely to be relevant globally.

    Read more.
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Finds Improvement in Supervision of Derivatives Data
    10/17/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has published the results of its peer review into the supervisory actions of six national regulators in enhancing the quality of derivatives data under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation. EMIR requires EU counterparties to a derivative contract to report details of their contract to one of the seven registered trade repositories supervised by ESMA. 

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • European Central Bank Publishes Report on the Risk Management Implications of the Euro Risk-Free Rates Provisions
    10/17/2019

    The European Central Bank has published a report on the risk management implications of the upcoming move away from the Euro Overnight Index Average (the overnight reference rate for the euro) and EURIBOR (the term reference rate for the euro) to alternative risk-free rates. Both EONIA and EURIBOR were identified as critical benchmarks for the purposes of the EU Benchmarks Regulation. 

    Read more.
  • European Banking Authority Publishes Consultation on Structural FX Guidelines Under Capital Requirements Regulation
    10/16/2019

    The European Banking Authority has published a consultation on its proposed guidelines on the implementation of the structural FX position contemplated by the Capital Requirements Regulation. The CRR requires institutions to calculate their net open positions in currencies according to specified formulae, but permits institutions to exclude positions that have been taken for hedging purposes and that are of a structural nature. 

    Read more.
  • Financial Stability Board Publishes Report on Progress of Over-The-Counter Derivatives Market Reforms
    10/15/2019

    The Financial Stability Board has published a report on the progress its member jurisdictions have made in 2019 on the implementation of agreed G20 reforms to over-the-counter derivatives markets. The report finds that there has been limited additional implementation of the reforms since the FSB’s 2018 report.

    Read more.
  • EU Council Adopts Laws on Enhanced Supervision of Third-Country CCPs 
    10/15/2019

    The Council of the European Union has adopted the amendments to EU law on CCP supervision. The adopted laws revising the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR 2.2) will change how both EU CCPs and third-country CCPs are supervised, and implement into legislation the controversial EU "location policy" for the largest third-country CCPs. According to the Council's press release, EMIR 2.2 is scheduled to be published in the Official Journal of the European Union on December 12, 2019 and would come into force 20 days later. The legislative process relevant to EMIR 2.2 has taken place with the U.K. exit from the European Union in the background and many of the changes relevant to third-country CCPs are effectively a response to the U.K.'s decision to leave the EU, given that two of the three largest European Union clearing houses are U.K.-based.

    Read more.
  • Financial Stability Board Publishes Report on Progress of Over-The-Counter Derivatives Market Reforms
    10/15/2019

    The Financial Stability Board has published a report on the progress its member jurisdictions have made in implementing the agreed G20 reforms to over-the-counter derivatives markets in 2018. The report finds that good progress has been made in implementation of the agenda.

    Read more.
  • International Bodies Issue Report on Governance Arrangements for Derivatives Data
    10/09/2019

    The Committee on Payments and Market Infrastructures and the International Organization of Securities Commissions have published a joint report on governance arrangements for critical data elements for over-the-counter derivatives. The report does not cover governance arrangements for the Unique Transaction Identifier and Unique Product Identifier, which are being reviewed separately by the Financial Stability Board. The report aims to contribute to international efforts to improve transparency, mitigate systemic risk and prevent market abuse in derivatives markets.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • Financial Stability Board Publishes Governance Arrangements for Unique Product Identifier
    10/09/2019

    The Financial Stability Board has published a report on governance arrangements for the Unique Product Identifier, a globally harmonized code identifying over-the-counter derivatives products reported to trade repositories. The UPI will enable authorities to aggregate data on OTC derivatives transactions, which will in turn help them to assess systemic risk and detect market abuse.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Consults on Alignment of EU Trading and Clearing Obligations
    10/04/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has published a consultation paper on aligning the trading obligation under the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation with the recent changes made to the clearing obligation under the European Markets Infrastructure Regulation by the EMIR Refit Regulation. Responses to the consultation should be submitted by November 22, 2019. ESMA intends to submit its final report to the European Commission in early 2020, with the Commission’s report to the European Parliament and Council expected by December 18, 2020.

    Read more.
  • EU Consultation on Clearing Service Provision under EMIR Refit
    10/03/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has opened a consultation on its draft technical advice on commercial terms for providing clearing services under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation. Responses to the consultation should be submitted by December 2, 2019.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Publishes 2020 Work Priorities
    10/01/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has published its Annual Work Programme for 2020. The Work Programme sets out ESMA’s focus areas for 2020 and provides details of expected outputs within each of the areas. In 2019, the European Council, Parliament and Commission agreed on new tasks for ESMA, meaning that ESMA will take on an enhanced role in areas including direct supervision, supervisory convergence and investor protection. The final Regulations amending the scope of the European Supervisory Authorities’ work mandates are expected to be published in the second half of 2019.

    Read more.
  • European Securities and Markets Authority Issues Call for Evidence on Product Intervention Measures
    09/30/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has issued a call for evidence on the impact of its product intervention powers prohibiting the marketing, distribution and sale of binary options to retail clients and imposing restrictions upon contracts for difference that were marketed, distributed or sold to retail clients. ESMA is seeking feedback from all interested stakeholders, in particular investment firms and banks providing investment services (particularly those that provide CfDs or binary options captured by the product intervention measures) and consumer groups and investors. Responses should be submitted by November 4, 2019.

    Read more.
    TOPICS: DerivativesMiFID II
  • European Banking Authority Launches Consultation on Synthetic Securitizations Framework
    09/25/2019

    The European Banking Authority has launched a consultation on its proposed simple, transparent and standardized framework for synthetic securitization. The paper also seeks feedback from stakeholders on a proposed list of criteria that should be considered when labeling a synthetic securitization an STS and on the introduction of different regulatory treatments for STS synthetic securitizations. The EBA will hold a public hearing on October 9, 2019 and responses to the consultation should be provided by November 25, 2019.

    Read more.
    TOPIC: Derivatives
  • International Swaps and Derivatives Association Consults on Final Fall Backs for Alternative Risk-Free Rates
    09/18/2019

    Following its previous two consultations, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association has launched a consultation on the proposed final parameters that will apply to alternative risk-free rates if derivatives fall backs are triggered. Responses to the consultation should be provided by October 23, 2019. ISDA will amend the 2006 ISDA Definitions based on the feedback and also intends to publish a protocol so that market participants can include fall backs in legacy IBOR contracts, if needed. Both documents are expected to be finalized before the end of 2019, ready for implementation in 2020.

    Read more.
  • European Commission Issues Communication on Final Preparations for No-Deal Brexit
    09/04/2019

    The European Commission has published a Communication on finalizing preparations for the withdrawal of the U.K. from the EU on November 1, 2019. The Commission stresses the likelihood of a no-deal Brexit on October 31, 2019 and asks all stakeholders to take action now to finalize their plans for the situation, noting that the contingency measures that are in place can only mitigate against some of the more significant disruptions. The Commission warns that a further delay to the date that the U.K. exits the EU should not be assumed, in that a delay may not be requested by the U.K. government nor granted by the EU.

    Read more.
  • EU Restrictions on Contracts for Difference Lifted in Wake of National Measures
    07/31/2019

    The European Securities and Markets Authority has announced that it will not again renew its product intervention measure for Contracts for Differences. ESMA's product intervention powers under the Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation allow it to impose temporary prohibitions or restrictions on certain financial instruments, financial activities or practices to address a significant investor protection concern in the EU. ESMA's first restrictions on the marketing, distribution and sale of CfDs to retail clients applied from August 1, 2018 and was then extended every three months because ESMA did not consider that the consumer protection risk had been addressed. ESMA's view is that because most national regulators in EU member states have now adopted permanent measures, its own temporary restrictions do not need to be extended. The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority has imposed permanent restrictions on the sale, marketing and distribution of CfDs and CfD-like options to retail consumers. The rules will apply to all CfDs entered into from August 1, 2019, and to CfD-like options entered into from September 1, 2019.

    Read more.
  • UK Draft Legislation for Post-Brexit EMIR 2.1 Published
    07/25/2019

    A draft U.K. statutory instrument to onshore into U.K. law, post-Brexit, the revised European Market Infrastructure Regulation (known as EMIR Refit) has been published - The Over the Counter Derivatives, Central Counterparties and Trade Repositories (Amendment, etc., and Transitional Provision) (EU Exit) (No. 2) Regulations 2019.

    EMIR Refit was published in the Official Journal of the European Union on May 28, 2019 and, for the most part, has applied directly across the EU since June 17, 2019.

    Read more.
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