Commentary

Monday, February 1, 2021

An Existential Moment for Securities Finance

Gamestop and the Storming of the Hedge Funds' Bastille

Author: Ed Blount

Feb 1, 2021: The social controversy over Gamestop’s (GME) battle of wills — r/wallstreetbets v 'The Shorts' — will harden the scrutiny of regulators and litigators toward the US$2.4 trillion global ecosystem that supports hedge fund strategies. This is a pivotal moment, not only for GME and The Shorts, but also for the Bastille-walled clearing markets that their lenders and agents use to secure the funds' trade settlements and financings. 

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Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Banking Leaders set to Control 'Shadow Exposures'

Supply Chains in Securities Finance to be Clarified and Stabilized

Author: David Schwartz
Shadow banking is history, say banking leaders, a thing of the past. New compliance and risk management systems based on the Securities Finance Transaction Regulation (SFTR) and the industry’s evolving Common Domain Model (CDM) will enable financial service providers to regulate their clients' exposure to counterparties with far more specificity than ever before possible. Originally accepted as a regulatory imposition, bankers are now viewing the SFTR reports of their loan...
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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Squaring ESG with Securities Lending

Compliance without Knowing the Borrower's Purpose - Is it Possible?

Author: David Schwartz
Sustainable investing is becoming more important to investors when creating portfolios. As a result, institutions often follow policies with formal environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors to guide their investments. They commit substantial resources to ESG research and produce comprehensive reports about their compliance.[1] But then the same institutions give away their proxy votes when they lend securities for fees to cover their bank charges. And the loans of those securities...
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Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Alarm Raised on Stock Loans for "Withholding Tax Schemes”

Findings Point to a New Role for Emerging Fintech

Author: David Schwartz
European commissioners are reviewing a study from their securities and market authority (ESMA) that includes a recommendation for new laws to combat unfair trading practices and an extended remit for National Competent Authorities (NCAs) to conduct snap audits of securities loans and transactors. Loans deemed to be suspicious would prompt an inquiry to determine penalties for unfair strategies and inappropriate beneficiaries. However, useful audit results may be doubtful based on our...
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Wednesday, December 4, 2019

ESG-compliant Solutions to Stock Lending Bans

Distributed Ledger Technology in Service to Activist Investors

Author: Ed Blount
Stock lending agents and prime brokers were challenged with a once-in-a-career opportunity after the December 3rd, 2019 announcement that Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF), the world’s largest pension fund, had decided to ban the lending of their offshore stocks -- nearly half of their holdings. That bold decision by the fund's CIO will reportedly cost as much as $300 million in lost annual income and “could prove hugely disruptive to equity markets if...
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Journal Commentaries

 

Keep Regulation Functional (October 2008)

CSFME’s Executive Director Ed Blount interviews SEC Chairman Chris Cox.
American Banking Association Banking Journal
https://www.questia.com/library/journal/1G1-187494664/keep-functional-regulation-how-financial-regulation

 

The Bear Market Posse, or Counterparty Risk Management during the Recent Turmoil (Sept.  2008)

by Ed Blount
The RMA Journal, v91n1, 28-32, 5 pages Sep 2008.

 

Searching for New Paradigms at BIS (July 2008)

by Ed Blount
Unexpected deficiencies in bank capital after recent market turmoil has regulators rethinking aspects of Basel II and “value at risk.”  
American Banking Association Banking Journal  
https://www.questia.com/library/journal/1G1-181991450/searching-for-new-paradigms-at-bis-market-turmoil

 

Will Basel II Affect The Competitive Landscape? (September 2003)

By Ed Blount
Newly elected Basel Committee Chairman Caruana, Governor of the Bank of Spain, gives his views on the revised Basel capital accord, relative to its potential effects on competition and risk management in banking markets.
American Banking Association Banking Journal
https://www.questia.com/read/1G1-108008773/will-basel-ii-affect-the-competitive-landscape-the​