HONG KONG, July 23 Global derivatives trade
group, the International Swaps and Derivatives Association
(ISDA), said on Wednesday it had appointed leading U.S.
regulator Scott O'Malia as its chief executive.
O'Malia, who on Monday said he was stepping down from his
role as a commissioner at the Commodity Futures Trading
Commission (CFTC), will join the ISDA from Aug 18, a dramatic
move that will see him represent the banks he has regulated for
the past four-and-a-half years.
ISDA is the major global lobby group for the
over-the-counter derivatives market, counting the world's
largest investment banks among its members. The trade body has
played a key role in the broader debate on how to make the
derivatives markets safer after the 2008 global financial
The appointment comes at as the international banking
community is starting to get to grips with new derivatives
trading rules introduced under the U.S. Dodd-Frank Act.
The detailed Dodd-Frank rules have been penned by the CFTC,
in a process that has been mired in controversy, both internally
within the organisation. The rules have also courted the ire of
international regulators, most notably the European Union, which
is introducing its own derivatives rules.
O'Malia served as one of five CFTC commissioners since
October 2009, having previously held several senior staff
positions in the U.S. Senate. He succeeds Robert Pickel, who
announced in April he was stepping down from the ISDA after
nearly 17 years with the trade group.
During his time at the CFTC, O'Malia, a Republican, became
an outspoken critic of the Dodd-Frank rule-making process, which
he said had been rushed, confused and lacked transparency.
"The need by thousands of companies around the world to
manage and hedge their business and financial risks via
derivatives remains as important as ever," O'Malia said in a
"ISDA's role is to ensure derivatives markets help to
fulfill this promise. It is a role that remains vital and
(Reporting by Michelle Price; Editing by Miral Fahmy)