October 11, 2017 / 3:30 PM / 2 years ago

CFTC to seek delay of rules on swap dealer registration

WASHINGTON, Oct 11 (Reuters) - The head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission said on Wednesday he wants to delay rules that would increase the number of firms that must register as swaps dealers.

CFTC Chairman Christopher Giancarlo told members of the House Agriculture Committee that he will seek a one-year delay of those rules, which would require firms with smaller swaps activity to register as swaps dealers and face stricter oversight.

“The goal is to get the right result, not a rushed result,” he said.

Giancarlo added that he plans to establish final rules implementing the expanded registration in the first half of 2018, and that no further delays are expected.

Specifically, the rules mandated under the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law would lower the threshold for registration with the CFTC from $8 billion in notional value to $3 billion. Giancarlo plans to ask the CFTC to vote on a one-year delay, pushing that requirement to the end of 2018.

Giancarlo said turnover at the agency necessitated the delay, citing the recent arrival of two new commissioners and key staff. He said he wanted to give the new officials more time to review the issue before pushing through a rulemaking.

“I’m reluctant to ask them to make such an important decision in a rush,” he said.

The lowered “de minimis” threshold for swaps dealer registration was already delayed once before by Giancarlo’s predecessor, Timothy Massad.

The CFTC currently enjoys a Republican majority, which is expected to vote to approve the delay in the coming weeks. (Reporting by Pete Schroeder; Editing by Chris Reese)

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