Release: 5696-09
For Release: August 20, 2009

CFTC/SEC to Hold Joint Meetings on Regulation Harmonization

Washington, DC – The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) today announced that the two regulatory agencies will hold joint meetings to seek input from the public on harmonization of market regulation. President Barack Obama in June called on the two regulators to recommend changes to their statutes and regulations that would eliminate differences with respect to similar types of financial instruments.

The first meeting, on September 2, 2009, will be held at the CFTC, and the second meeting, on September 3, 2009, will be held at the SEC.

“I look forward to working with Chairman Schapiro and hearing from market experts and participants on how to most effectively harmonize our regulatory systems,” CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler said. “Harmonizing our regulatory policies will improve market integrity by applying consistent standards to market participants. There are three areas where this review will most benefit the American public: to address gaps between the two agencies’ financial regulatory authorities, to assess the effects of regulatory overlap and to bring appropriate consistency to the two agencies’ regulation over similar products, practices and markets.”

“These joint meetings will build on the progress the CFTC and SEC have made on designing a framework to regulate OTC derivatives. It will move us further down the road of harmonizing our regulations to increase transparency, reduce regulatory arbitrage and rebuild confidence in our markets,” said SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro.

On June 17, 2009, the White House released a White Paper on Financial Regulatory Reform calling on the CFTC and SEC to “make recommendations to Congress for changes to statutes and regulations that would harmonize regulation of futures and securities.”

Specifically, the White House recommended “that the CFTC and the SEC complete a report to Congress by September 30, 2009 that identifies all existing conflicts in statutes and regulations with respect to similar types of financial instruments and either explains why those differences are essential to achieve underlying policy objectives with respect to investor protection, market integrity, and price transparency or makes recommendations for changes to statutes and regulations that would eliminate the differences.”

Media Contacts
Scott Schneider

R. David Gary

Last Updated: August 19, 2009