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CFTC nod and a wink for IM phase 5 depopulation

The CFTC’s Office of the Chief Economist (OCE) has responded to industry petitions to mitigate the widely-forecasted IM Phase 5 oncoming storm. Readers will recall the July 2018 ISDA/SIFMA white paper previewing the phase 5 population explosion and recommending various reduction strategies: Raising the in-scope AANA threshold from $8bn. to $100bn. Postponing mandatory compliance until […]

CFTC to simplify segregation

July 24th saw a unanimous approval of the CFTC’s proposal to reduce the complexity surrounding segregation of assets held as collateral in uncleared swap transactions. Under the Dodd-Frank, a swap dealer was required to notify each counterparty that they (the counterparty) possessed the right to choose whether to keep their funds in a segregated account […]

US to EU- the honeymoon is over

Although prefaced by the usual caveat that “the views contained in this speech are my own and do not represent the views of the CFTC”, Commissioner Brian Quintenz delivered the keynote address yesterday at the FIA Annual Meeting, eviscerating the EU’s plans to revise EMIR in respect of CCP oversight. The short speech is well-worth reading in full, […]


The transatlantic trading platform cousins have officially been recognised as twins, on 5 November the European Commission announced its long-promised equivalence decision in respect of U.S. swap execution facilities. The CFTC plans to reciprocate by exempting MTFs and OTFs from U.S. registration requirements. The mutual recognition comes just in time before the 3 January 2018 […]

EMIR = CFTC – better late than never

On 13 October 2017, the CTC and the EU announced substituted compliance determinations in respect of margin requirements for OTC derivatives. The determinations accept that the CFTC’s Final Margin Rule and EMIR’s risk mitigation and margin requirements are sufficiently comparable on a substantive outcomes basis. For those interested in reading the full text, we recommend […]

Initial Margin rollout initially marginal

Yesterday marked the first test of the WGMR non-cleared margin rules in the US, Canada and Japan. Even with just over 20 banks in the initial phase, market participants were readying themselves for a rocky start to the new regime. They will not have been disappointed, the afternoon saw the CFTC step in with its […]

CFTC Clearing to embrace (nearly) everyone else

The CFTC yesterday proposed a large expansion to the classes covered by its clearing determination Regulation 50.4(a). The proposal’s intention is to make the CFTC clearing obligation consistent with a wide range of international jurisdictions. To this end, it adds the currencies of Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Mexico, Norway, Poland, Singapore, Sweden and Switzerland to […]

CCP equivalence- US says “I do” too

Following the CFTC-EU Common Approach and the EC’s recognition of US equivalency; the CFTC yesterday unanimously approved a positive “comparability determination”, allowing DCO/CCPs subject to EMIR to benefit from substituted compliance with its clearing regulations. EU-authorised, and hence EMIR-compliant, CCPs will now be effectively absolved from CFTC requirements for financial resources, risk management, settlement procedures […]

EC adopts US CCP equivalence

The only recently-acknowledged elephant of EU-US CCP lack of equivalence is one step closer to leaving the room. The European Commission has today granted the CFTC status as an equivalent regulatory regime for CCPs. The determination will be effected by a legally-binding implementing act in accordance with Article 25(6) EMIR. The decision follows the 10 […]

Footnote 195- extend and pretend

The CFTC’s Division of Market Oversight yesterday issued no-action letter 16-25, extending no-action relief for SEF confirmation and recordkeeping requirements under CFTC Regulations 37.6(b), 37.1000, 37.1001, 45.2 and 45.3(a). Connoisseurs of CFTC no-action will immediately recognise the notorious regulations that require SEFs to obtain pre-trade physical copies of the master agreements to which their trade […]

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