WASHINGTON — Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan has joined global finance officials in urging US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew to limit the cross-border reach of Dodd-Frank Act swaps rules, which they say are fragmenting the $639-trillion global market.
European Union financial services chief Michel Barnier and Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne requested, in a letter signed by nine finance ministers, that US officials allow for broader recognition of overseas swaps rules.
It was also signed by finance ministers Guido Mantega of Brazil, Pierre Moscovici of France, Wolfgang Schaeuble of Germany, Anton Siluanov of Russia, Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf of Switzerland and Japan’s Taro Aso.
The letter follows complaints by JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and overseas officials about the planned reach of US Commodity Futures Trading Commission rules.
"We are concerned that, without clear direction from global policymakers and regulators, derivatives markets will recede into localised and less efficient structures, impairing the ability of business across the globe to manage risk," the letter says.
The US trading watchdog, led by chairman Gary Gensler, has pushed for cross-border swaps rules that cover transactions involving overseas offices of US banks and hedge funds incorporated offshore.
"If a run starts in one part of a modern financial institution, whether it’s here or offshore, the risk comes back to our shores," Mr Gensler said at the International Monetary Fund and World Bank Group conference in Washington.
"An approach in which jurisdictions require that their own domestic regulatory rules be applied to their firms’ derivatives transactions taking place in broadly equivalent regulatory regimes abroad is not sustainable," the officials wrote.