The CFTC has issued a no action letter providing temporary relief for Commodity Pool Operators (CPOs) and Commodity Trading Advisors (CTAs) who are affected by the recent changes to the CFTC registration exemptions.  The no action letter extends the deadline for registration for those affected by the recission of CFTC Rule 4.13(a)(4) and the amended Rule 4.5.    The no action letter extends the date by which CPOs and CTAs for certain types of privately owned pools (including hedge funds) and registered investment companies must be registered to 31st December 2012.  On or after that date the CPO or CTA will require to register and comply with the CFTC regulations or rely on the exemptions from registration.

For the relief to apply the CPO or CTA would have to been eligible for exemption for registration under Rule 4.13(a).  In brief, Rule 4.13(a) required that the interests are exempt from registration under the Securities Act of 1933 and that it is restricted to sophisticated investors e.g. accredited investors.  This would normally be the section under which hedge funds previously sought relief from registration.  In order to avail itself of the relief to extend the deadline for registration to 31st December 2012 a claim by e-mail including certain information must be provided (e.g name and address of the CPO or CTA, capacity in which it is filed).   It should be noted that the relief only extends the deadlines for CPOs (e.g. hedge funds) that were exempt under previous rules to 31st December 2012. After that date they must comply with the registration and ongoing requirements if they are not able to continue to seek relief under the limited exemptions that are permitted after that date.