Michael H. Sugarman is a lawyer in Orrick's Structured Finance Group, based in the Los Angeles office. Michael specializes in structured finance and has extensive experience advising on procedural rules and substantive policies in federal matters.

During law school, Michael served as a judicial extern for the Honorable George H. Wu of the United States District Court, Central District of California. Michael also served as Executive Editor of the Loyola of Los Angeles International and Comparative Law Review.  Prior to joining Orrick, Michael served as a law clerk to multiple magistrate judges in the United States District Court, Central District of California and worked as an associate for the Law Offices of Steven Goldsobel, A Professional Corporation.

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Posts by: Michael Sugarman

Rating Agency Developments

 

On August 2, 2017, DBRS issued a report entitled: North American Commercial Mortgage Servicer Evaluations. Report.

On July 31, 2017, Fitch issued a release entitled: Fitch Updates UK Whole Business Securitisation Rating Criteria. Release.

On July 28, 2017, Fitch issued a release entitled: Fitch Updates Closed-End Fund and Market Value Structures Rating CriteriaRelease.

SEC Issues Investigative Report Concluding DAO Tokens, a Digital Asset, Were Securities

 

On July 25, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC“) released a report indicating that many offerings of “digital assets[,]” such as those using “distributed ledger or blockchain technology,” could be subject to federal securities laws. In this specific instance, the SEC chose not to bring charges or find violations but to go further into the SEC’s positions on this emerging sector. Press Release.

CFTC Staff Extends Time-Limited No-Action Relief on the Applicability of Transaction-Level Requirements in Certain Cross-Border Situations

 

On July 25, 2017, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (the “CFTC“) “issued a time-limited no-action letter that extends relief to swap dealers [] registered with the CFTC that are established under the laws of jurisdictions other than the United States [] from certain transaction-level requirements under the Commodity Exchange Act.” Press Release.

Federal Reserve Board Announces Guidelines for Banking Entities Seeking an Extension to Conform Certain “Seeding” Investments in Hedge Funds or Private Equity Funds to Requirements of Volcker Rule

 

On July 24, 2017, the Federal Reserve Board “announced guidelines for banking entities seeking an extension to conform certain ‘seeding’ investments in hedge funds or private equity funds (‘covered funds‘) to the requirements of … the Volcker Rule.” In part, the new guidelines require further detail regarding “the reasons for the extension and an explanation of the entity’s plan to conform the investment to the requirements of” the Volcker Rule. Press Release.

Federal Regulatory Agencies Announce Coordination of Reviews for Certain Foreign Funds Under “Volcker Rule”

 

On July 21, 2017, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Office of Comptroller of the Currency and the Securities and Exchange Commission announced they would work together as they reviewed the impact of the Volcker Rule on specific types of foreign funds. Federal Reserve Press Release. FDIC Press Release. OCC Press Release. SEC Press Release.

Rating Agency Developments

 

On July 26, 2017, Moody’s issued the following reports:

On July 21, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Fitch Revises Sovereign Rating Criteria. Report.

On July 21, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Fitch Updates Country Ceilings Criteria. Report.

On July 20, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Fitch Updates Availability-Based Projects Rating Criteria. Report.

Federal Reserve Board Approves Extended Transition Period for Deutsche Bank AG, SVB Financial Group, and UBS Group AG to Conform Investments in Certain “Illiquid Funds” to Requirements of Volcker Rule

 

On June 7, 2017, the Federal Reserve Board authorized an extension of up to five (5) years for Deutsche Bank AG, SVB Financial Group, and UBS Group AG to comply with certain aspects of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (often referred to as the Volcker rule) relating to “investments in certain ‘illiquid funds[.]'” Press Release.

Rating Agency Developments

 

On June 7, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Fitch Publishes Updated U.S. Timeshare Loan ABS Rating Criteria. Press Release.

On June 6, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Fitch Updates Structured Finance CDOs Surveillance Rating Criteria. Press Release.

The annual CRE Finance Council took place on June 5-7, 2017 in Washington, D.C. KBRA released two recaps of the panel sessions. The first full day was packed with a variety of topics, which ranged from the real estate cycle to tax policy to the current finance regulatory environment June 6 Recap. The final day of the conference included panels on construction lending, loan documents, the borrower experience and servicing fee structures. June 7 Recap.

The 2017 NYU International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference, which provided an overview of the current state of the lodging industry, issues facing the sector and thoughts on its future direction, was held on June 5-6 in New York. KBRA released a summary of key takeaways from the conference. Report.

On June 2, 2017, Fitch issued a report entitled Fitch Updates EMEA RMBS Criteria Addendum for UK: No Rating Impact. Press Release.

On June 1, 2017, Moody’s issued a report entitled Moody’s Approach to Rating SF CDOs. Report.

CFTC’s Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight Issues Time-Limited No-Action Transition for March 1, 2017 Compliance Date for Variation Margin and No-Action Relief From Minimum Transfer Amount Provisions

 

On February 13, 2017, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (the “CFTC“) announced that, between March 1, 2017 and September 1, 2017, it would “not recommend an enforcement action against a swap dealer (SD) for failure to comply with the variation margin requirements for swaps that are subject to a March 1, 2017 compliance date.” Importantly, the CFTC is not delaying the compliance date, but rather providing a “grace period” for compliance.

In the same release, the CFTC announced it would “not recommend an enforcement action against an SD, subject to certain conditions, that does not comply with the minimum transfer amount (MTA) requirements of” two CFTC regulations. Release.