Proposed rules on cross-border application of registration thresholds, external business conduct standards. The Federal Register published the CFTC’s proposed rules addressing the cross-border application of certain swap provisions of the CEA. The proposed rule defines key terms for purposes of applying the CEA’s swap provisions to cross-border transactions and addresses the cross-border application of the registration thresholds and external business conduct standards for swap dealers and major swap participants, including the extent to which they would apply to swap transactions that are arranged, negotiated, or executed using personnel located in the US. Comments must be received by December 19, 2016. (10/18/2016)
Advisory issued on investments in money market mutual funds. The Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (DSIO) issued an advisory to futures commission merchants in response to inquiries regarding the practical application and effect of the DSIO’s August letter granting no-action relief regarding investments in money market funds. (10/18/2016)
Final order issued exempting certain specified transactions of SPP. The CFTC announced its unanimous approval of a final order in response to a petition from Southwest Power Pool, Inc. (SPP), a Regional Transmission Organization regulated by FERC. The final order exempts certain transactions of SPP from the CEA and CFTC regulations, with the exception of the CFTC’s general anti-fraud and anti-manipulation authority, and scienter-based prohibitions. The final order will expressly exempt such transactions from private actions under CEA section 22. (10/18/2016) Q&A. See Chair Massad statement. Also see Commissioner Giancarlo statement.
Federal Register publishes final rule on clearing requirement determination of the CEA for Interest Rate Swaps. The Federal Register published the CFTC’s final rule requiring that interest rate swaps denominated in certain currencies and having certain termination dates be submitted for clearing to a DCO that is registered under the CEA or a DCO that has been exempted from registration under the CEA. The amended rule is effective December 13, 2016. (10/14/2016)
CFTC approves order on swap dealer registration de minimis exception. The CFTC announced that it approved an Order establishing December 31, 2018, as the swap dealer registration de minimis threshold phase-in termination date. CFTC Regulation 1.3(ggg)(4)(ii)(C)(1) provides that the agency may terminate the December 31, 2017 phase-in termination date and establish a new phase-in termination date by Order. With this approval, the de minimis threshold will remain at US$8 billion until December 31, 2018, instead of changing to US$3 billion on December 31, 2017. Absent further action by the CFTC, the phase-in period would terminate on December 31, 2018, at which time the de minimis threshold will be US$3 billion. See Federal Register notice. Also see Chairman Massad’s statementand the concurring statement of Commissioner Bowen. (10/13/2016)
Rule enforcement review of the NYMEX and COMEX. The DMO announced that it has issued the results of a rule enforcement review of the New York Mercantile Exchange and the Commodity Exchange. The DMO found that NYMEX and COMEX have adequate market surveillance programs, subject to one recommendation regarding the exchanges’ program for monitoring exemptions from position limits. The DMO recommended that these exchanges “consider implementing a formal review process by which they can verify that a market participant who has a position larger than a position limit is, in fact, making use of an exemption, consistent with the strategy described in their exemption application.” (10/13/2016)
Proposed rule on application of certain swap provisions in cross-border transactions is approved. The CFTC announced that it voted unanimously to propose rules and interpretations addressing the application of certain swap provisions of the CEA and CFTC regulations to cross-border transactions. The comment period ends 60 days following publication of the proposal in the Federal Register. For more information, see the Fact sheet and the Federal Register notice.Also see Chairman Massad’s statement, the concurring statement of Commissioner Bowen, and Commissioner Giancarlo’s statement. (10/11/2016)