March 10, 2017

CFTC’s Division of Market Oversight Issues Conditional Extension of No-Action Relief Regarding Masking of Certain Identifying Information Required to be Reported

Washington, DC — The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Division of Market Oversight (DMO) today issued a letter providing a conditional extension of the relief provided in CFTC Letters 16-03 and 16-33, regarding masking of certain identifying information required to be reported. The extension is valid through September 1, 2017 (12:00 am EST) for certain French and Swiss swaps described in the extension as “French Reportable Swaps” and “Swiss Reportable Swaps.” For all other swaps, the extension is valid with respect to each reporting counterparty for as long as the reporting counterparty reasonably believes that reporting the relevant identifying information would violate applicable foreign laws.

As background, in 2013, DMO issued CFTC letter 13-41, which permitted Part 45 and Part 46 reporting counterparties to mask legal entity identifiers, other enumerated identifiers and other identifying terms, and permitted Part 20 reporting entities to mask identifying information of certain counterparties located in enumerated jurisdictions. DMO extended this relief several times, including last year with CFTC Letter 16-03. CFTC Letter 16-33, issued on April 8, 2016, permitted parties required to file Forms 102A and 102B (ownership and control report forms used in the CFTC’s large trader reporting program) to mask certain data that would otherwise identify their counterparties. DMO granted relief, as it had in 16-03 and its predecessor letters, in order to permit such reporting parties to comply with foreign laws. The relief granted in 16-33 was modeled on 16-03 and contained parallel conditions of relief.

DMO is removing the conditions that parties relying on the relief seek, receive and provide to DMO confirmation from relevant foreign authorities that the relief is necessary. In addition to providing the extension, DMO states in the letter that the Privacy Law Identifier (PLI) condition of relief requires that the PLI must be unique to each counterparty covered by the relief and must identify such counterparty to the exclusion of all other counterparties. Today’s relief is also conditioned upon ISDA and FIA notifying DMO if and when masking identifying information no longer is necessary. This notice must occur promptly after the relevant change in law in each jurisdiction covered by the relief. Finally, the relief is contingent on satisfying all terms and conditions in CFTC Letters 16-33 and 16-03 and prior CFTC letters that remain in effect.

The current extension permits reporting parties who meet the conditions of relief in the prior CFTC letters and in today’s extension to fulfill their reporting obligations while acknowledging privacy, secrecy and blocking laws in certain non-U.S. jurisdictions. The current extension also phases out the relief, where appropriate, to reflect French and Swiss legislation obviating the need for the relief.

Last Updated: March 10, 2017