The Commodity Futures Trading Commission will host an open meeting at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 23, at which it expects to cover the following topics:

  1. notice of proposed rulemaking regarding amendments to regulations on certain swap data depository and swap data reporting requirements;
  2. notice of proposed rulemaking regarding amendments to derivatives clearing organization general

On March 19, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) released Regulatory Notice 19-08 to provide guidance to members for reporting lease assets and liabilities on their FOCUS reports. FINRA’s notice follows an October 2018 No-Action Letter (the No-Action Letter) in which the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Trading and Markets (the Staff) addressed the treatment of operating leases under Securities Exchange Act Rule 15c3-1 in connection with the Financial Accounting Standards Board’s Accounting Standards Update for Leases.
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On March 20, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) released Regulatory Notice 19-09, which reminds members of their obligations under Securities Exchange Act Rule 15c2-11 and FINRA Rule 6432 (Compliance with the Information Requirements of Rule 15c2-11). Rule 15c2-11 prohibits a broker-dealer from publishing (or submitting for publication) a quotation in an unlisted security

On February 15, four members of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (Commissioner Stump recused herself) filed a comment letter regarding the standardized approach for calculating the exposure amount of derivative contracts proposed by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (the Agencies). In 2018, the Agencies proposed a standardized approach for measuring counterparty credit risk (SA-CCR), which would replace the current exposure methodology (CEM) as an alternative method for calculations under the Agencies’ capital rules.
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On January 22, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued its annual Risk Monitoring and Examination Priorities Letter. This year’s letter includes a number of new areas for firms to consider in seeking to improve their compliance, supervisory and risk management programs.
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On December 19, the US Securities and Exchange Commission announced that it had voted to conduct a Transaction Fee Pilot in national market system (NMS) stocks, following a recommendation from the Equity Market Structure Advisory Committee. The SEC is initiating the Pilot to study the effects of exchange transaction fee and rebate pricing models on

On November 27, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s LabCFTC released “A CFTC Primer on Smart Contracts” to provide information on a variety of financial technology (FinTech) topics. LabCFTC is a hub designed for the CFTC to engage with the FinTech community.

The primer defines a “smart contract” as “a set of coded computer functions” that

On November 19, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission approved a final rule to amend its margin requirements for uncleared swaps for swap dealers and major swap participants for which there is no prudential regulator (CFTC Margin Rule). As a part of the Project KISS initiative, the amendments were designed to harmonize the CFTC Margin Rule with related rules that certain prudential regulators have adopted (QFC Rules).
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On August 29, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight (Division) issued a no-action letter confirming that it will not recommend enforcement action against a futures commission merchant (FCM) if the accountant’s audit opinion included in the FCM’s annual financial report does not include “critical audit matters” (or the absence thereof) as required by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) standards. CFTC regulations generally require accountants engaged in audits of FCMs to register with the PCAOB and to conduct FCM audits in accordance with PCAOB standards. In 2017, the PCAOB adopted AS 3101, which requires an auditor registered with the PCAOB to communicate any critical audit matters in its audit report related to the financial statements of public companies. “Critical audit matters” include matters that are communicated or required to be communicated to the audit committee and: (1) relate to the accounts or disclosures that are material to the financial statements; and (2) involve especially challenging, subjective or complex auditor judgment.
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