Stephen: We were discussing this story today and its context in relation to both the long-awaited financial system overhaul and imminent RV. If I may, I’m going to use what Steve Beckow had to say, as the perfect primer:
“It relates to efforts to clamp down on the derivatives trade. Derivatives were what condemned the market economy, as it now exists, to go into terminal failure.
“Derivatives, or ‘swaps,’ are an invention of firms like JPMorgan (see separate story below), ostensibly to insure companies against losses – but they were really ways for Morgan and other investment houses to make mounds of money.
“When rampant losses came from the housing market collapse and similar events, it was quickly shown that no one could cover losses such as those and the phony nature of the effort was revealed.
“At the same time, the debt incurred from the derivatives bubble totaled $200,000 for every man, woman and child on the planet. The investment houses keep their derivatives losses on a second set of books. If they ever needed to pay them, the whole economy would collapse. So these measures are part of the effort designed to ensure the death of the derivatives scam and with it the death of the cabal in the financial world.”
FX Systems Urge Clients To Get Ready for SEFs Rules. Fast
By Clare Connaghan, Reuters – September 28, 2013
There’s a new round of derivatives regulations coming in the U.S., and fears are growing that they will create turmoil (Stephen: read this as a good thing) as soon as next week in the parts of the market that are affected.
On October 2, systems that scoop up and churn out prices from a number of different banks (“multidealer platforms” in the market’s parlance) have to be registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission as Swap Execution Facilities to offer trading in certain types of FX (Foreign Exchange) products—non-deliverable forwards and options.
Clients of these systems also have to do the paperwork to able to continue using the platforms when the new rules come into force next Wednesday.
The platforms say they are ready. But they’re urging latecomer clients to sign up with the new rules, and fast.
And as it only become clear in May that these FX products would fall under the new regulations, the platform operators expect there will be stragglers.
“U.S. clients and entities trading with U.S. clients will be blocked from trading these instruments if not enabled on the SEF,” warned one such system, 360T, on its website.
The new rules could have far reaching ramifications: some market participants say they plan to stop trading on these systems altogether, going back to more old-fashioned ways of working, and there are worries that the rules could send trading to more lightly-regulated jurisdictions.
Jodi Burns, head of regulation for Marketplaces at Thomson Reuters, which has filed an application to be a SEF, explains that if clients still want the benefits of trading on a multidealer platform “which includes access to deeper liquidity, best execution, pre- and post-trade processes and rich functionality”, then customers really have to be signed up.
If they don’t, options left to clients include using individual banks’ systems or trading on the phone.
The whole process is something of a rush. Systems, banks and clients had not expected that they would need to comply with all of the new rules for all of these products in this time frame. But the final rules, released in May, were different to the preliminary guidelines that people had been working towards for several months.
One fillip: latecomers can still sign up after the deadline. “Market participants can also begin trading on SEFs on Oct. 3rd, 4th and so on. It’s not like Oct 2 is the last train leaving the station and if you miss it, that’s the end,” said Ms. Burns.