For Release: September 19, 2001
CFTC Provides Additional Relief to Futures Industry Following Attacks
Washington D.C. -- The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) today announced a broad package of regulatory relief measures designed to assist futures commission merchants, introducing brokers, commodity pool operators, and commodity trading advisors (together, “registrants”) as they resume operations and carry on with business in the face of enormous challenges presented by the attacks on the World Trade Center. These formal measures complement the CFTC’s initial responses to issues of immediate concern to firms and exchanges as they prepared for the resumption of trading, which began last week in many non-equity-based futures contracts and continued with equity-based contracts when the stock markets reopened on Monday. The CFTC is also encouraging firms whose particular circumstances may warrant relief beyond that provided in the general measures to contact the CFTC, the National Futures Association, or their designated self-regulatory organizations.
Acting Chairman James E. Newsome said, “The U.S. futures markets have demonstrated remarkable resilience in the face of unprecedented challenges and words alone cannot fully express my respect for every organization in this industry. The foresight of their contingency plans, the steady hand of their leadership, and most of all, the courage and tenacity of all of their people should instill in each of us great confidence in our nation’s financial system. I will be traveling to New York tomorrow to meet with the staff of our regional office that was located in the World Trade Center. I believe the measures announced today provide much-needed relief and we will continue to look at ways in which the CFTC can support the futures industry as it resumes its critically important business of providing price discovery and risk management tools to businesses in every sector of the economy, both across the country and around the globe.”
For all registrants, the CFTC will not consider last Tuesday through Friday to have been business days for the purposes of specified reporting and minimum capital requirements, notice of bulk transfer obligations, and records inspection requirements imposed by the CFTC regulations (detailed in the attached Statement of Policy). This effectively extends certain reporting deadlines and recognizes that firms may have had difficulty last week in moving funds, issuing notices, providing customers with access to records, or precisely measuring portfolio values.
Firms that had their physical operations disrupted as a result of the attacks and were consequently unable to comply with regulations requiring that records be readily accessible and that the means to translate records stored on electronic or micrographic media be available at all times shall not be required to do so for the 31-day period from September 11 through October 11, 2001. Such disrupted firms that were unable on last Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday to comply with requirements of specified regulations concerning the calculation of segregated funds and secured amounts have also been excused from those requirements for those four days. For such firms that were unable to comply with the confirmation statement, transaction application, and position closeout requirements of other specified regulations last Tuesday through Friday, those days shall not be counted by the CFTC as either business or calendar days in determining such compliance.
Some firms whose operations were disrupted by the attacks have now resumed operations in alternate facilities or with limited resources and, consequently, may have difficulty complying with noon deadlines for certain segregated funds calculations. Such firms may, until October 11, extend those deadlines to the close of business on the applicable business days. Similarly, firms that are unable to access time-stamping equipment as a result of these events may substitute the use of reasonable alternative methods during the 10-day period from September 11 through September 21, 2001.
Firms which would normally file paper copies of reports with the CFTC’s New York Regional Office should instead send them to the Chicago Regional Office at:
Commodity Futures Trading Commission
300 South Riverside Plaza
Suite 1600 North
Chicago, IL 60606
The details of these regulatory relief measures are available on the Commission’s website at www.cftc.gov. Copies of the CFTC’s order and other supporting material prepared by CFTC staff may also be obtained by contacting the Commission’s Office of the Secretariat, Three Lafayette Centre, 1155 21st Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20581, (202) 418-5100.