CFTC

Agencies Publish Rule Excluding Community Banks from Volcker Rule

 

On July 9, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Federal Reserve Board, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopted a final rule that excludes community banks from the Volcker Rule, which restricts banking entities from engaging in proprietary trading and from owning, sponsoring or having certain relationships with hedge funds or private equity funds. Under the final rule that was adopted, community banks with $10 billion or less in total consolidated assets, and which have total trading assets and liabilities that are 5% or less than such community bank’s total consolidated assets, will be excluded from the Volcker Rule.

 

CFTC Approves a Final Rule Revising Privacy Notice Requirements

 

On April 19, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) approved a final rule to revise an existing CFTC regulation that currently requires certain merchants and dealers, among other persons, to provide annual privacy notices to customers. The new rule will remove this requirement to provide annual privacy notices when certain conditions are met. Release.

CFTC and MAS Mutually Recognize Certain Derivatives Trading Venues in the U.S. and Singapore

 

On March 13, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) issued an order exempting certain derivatives trading facilities regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) from the requirement to register with the CFTC as swap execution facilities (SEFs), and MAS announced the issuance of regulations exempting certain derivatives trading venues regulated by the CFTC from the requirement to be a MAS-authorized approved exchange (AE) or recognized market operator (RMO) before establishing or operating an organized market. Press Release. CFTC Order of Exemption. MAS Order of Exemption.

UK and US Authorities Release Statement on Post-Brexit Continuity of Derivatives Trading and Clearing

 

On February 25, the Bank of England (BoE), the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) published a joint statement detailing the measures that will be taken to ensure the continuity of UK-US derivatives trading and clearing activities after Brexit.

The measures address:

UK equivalence for the US: UK authorities have confirmed that US trading venues, firms and central counterparties (CCPs) will be able to continue providing services in the UK. The basis on which these trading venues, firms and CCPs currently provide services in the EU and to EU firms is as a result of various decisions taken by the European Commission in declaring the CFTC regulatory framework equivalent.

Continued supervisory co-operation: The FCA and CFTC will update their memorandums of understanding (MoUs) covering certain firms in the derivatives and the alternative investment fund industry. The BoE and CFTC will update their MoU covering clearing activity, in connection with the UK’s forthcoming recognition of CFTC-registered CCPs.

Extension of existing CFTC relief and comparability for the UK: The CFTC intends that existing regulatory relief granted by the CFTC to EU firms, including UK firms, will be extended to UK firms when the UK leaves the EU.

CFTC Requests Public Comment on a Rule Amendment Certification Filing by IFUS

 

On February 13, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC“) requested public comment on a rule amendment certification filing by ICE Futures U.S., Inc. (“IFUS“). The amendment to IFUS Rule 4.26 would allow for the implementation of Passive Order Protection (“POP“) Functionality. As described in the certification, POP Functionality is intended to reduce latency advantages between traders engaged in arbitrage strategies against related markets. The POP Functionality would be implemented in the Gold Daily and Silver Daily futures markets. Comments must be submitted on or before March 15. Release.

CFTC Approves a Final Rule to Amend Uncleared Swap Margin Requirements

 

On November 19, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”) announced that it approved a final rule to amend its uncleared swap margin requirements to better align with certain rules adopted by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency that impose restrictions on certain qualified financial contracts. Press release. Rule.

CFTC’s Office of the Chief Economist Issues Report on Initial Margin Phase 5

 

On October 31, the Office of the Chief Economist of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC“) issued a report about uncleared margin rules, which goes into effect on September 1, 2020. On such date, swap market participants with between $8 and $750 billion of swaps notional amounts must begin to post and collect initial margin on all trades that have at least one swap-dealer counterparty. Release.