Message from Congress on Cross-Border Swaps

Bill to limit the CFTC's cross-border authority faces U.S. House vote, but the Senate isn't expected to consider it.

House lawmakers vote today on legislation that would curb the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC's) authority to oversee the $633 trillion global swaps market.

The vote takes place as a majority of CFTC commissioners have signaled they want to delay final action on how new derivatives rules apply to foreign banks and the overseas affiliates of U.S. banks and hedge funds. Chairman Gary Gensler insists the agency should take its final vote on the guidance by July 12, when the current deadline expires.

Foreign ‘Failure’

Gensler said last week that the guidance must be finished to avoid banks and hedge funds skirting the rules by “setting up shop in an offshore locale, even if it’s not much more than a tropical island P.O. box.”

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