On July 29, 2021, the Alternative Reference Rates Committee (“ARRC”) announced that it is formally recommending the CME Group’s forward-looking Secured Overnight Financing Rate (“SOFR”) term rates (“SOFR Term Rates”) following the completion of a key change in interdealer trading conventions on July 26, 2021 under the “SOFR First” initiative. Under the CFTC’s Market Risk Advisory Committee’s market best practice called “SOFR First”, it was recommended that interdealer brokers replace trading of LIBOR linear swaps with trading of SOFR linear swaps on July 26, 2021. The ARRC had previously announced, on May 21, 2021, that it had selected the CME Group as the administrator that it planned to recommend for SOFR Term Rates once market indicators for the term rate are met. The SOFR First convention change, along with the continued growth in SOFR cash and derivatives markets, has allowed the ARRC to recommend SOFR Term Rates consistent with the principles and indicators it established to do so. The ARRC noted that this formal recommendation marked the completion of its “Paced Transition Plan,” outlined in 2017, and follows the ARRC’s previous announcements of conventions and recommended best practices for the use of SOFR Term Rates, which may all be used by market participants when using SOFR Term Rates in legacy fallbacks and new contracts in anticipation of the upcoming LIBOR cessation. The ARRC also released a “factsheet” outlining the key steps in this process to date and upcoming milestones.

Key Publications

ARRC Press Release “ARRC Formally Recommends Term SOFR”

The ARRC Factsheet