Release:                  #4234-99
For Release:          February 4, 1999


WASHINGTON -- The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) concerning consultation and cooperation in the administration and enforcement of futures laws with the Commissão do Mercado de Valores Mobiliãrios (CMVM), Portugal's securities and futures regulator. The MOU was signed in London by CFTC Chairperson Brooksley Born and CMVM Chairman José Nunes Pereira following a meeting of the Technical Committee of the International Organization of Securities Commissions.

According to the MOU, the CFTC and CMVM recognize "increased international activity in futures and options transactions" and acknowledge "the need for mutual cooperation to facilitate the administration and enforcement of futures and options laws applicable in their respective jurisdictions." To this end, the MOU provides a framework for the authorities to share information and to extend assistance to one another in taking statements, collecting information and conducting investigations.

In commenting on the CFTC's latest MOU, CFTC Chairperson Born stated: "The MOU with the CMVM continues the CFTC's long tradition of cooperative arrangements with foreign futures authorities. We view MOUs to be a key component of an effective regulatory and enforcement program. As internationalization continues to define world markets, regulators cannot rely solely on their own authority to regulate and to police financial activity that crosses borders. Indeed, cooperative arrangements, such as the one undertaken today, have become cornerstones in meeting the twin mandates of market integrity and customer protection."

In addition to the MOU signed today, the CFTC has cooperative arrangements with authorities in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada (Ontario and Quebec), France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, South Africa, Taiwan and the United Kingdom. It is also authorized to request assistance from Switzerland under the US-Swiss treaty on mutual assistance in criminal matters.