Monday 20th October 2014
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MONDAY TICKER: OCTOBER 20th 2014: Morgan Stanley’s third quarter earnings beat analysts’ estimates today, with strong equity sales and improved results across its fixed income and commodities trading. The New York-based bank reported a third quarter net income $1.71bn, or 84 cents a share, up from $906m, or 45 cents, a year earlier - China business sentiment slipped for the second consecutive month in October, falling to an eight month low, amid calls for the Chinese authorities to do more to boost growth - The Depository Trust and Clearing Corporation (DTCC) and other market participants have formed an industry steering committee and an industry working group to facilitate the move to shorten the settlement cycle in the US for trades in equities, corporate and municipal bonds, and unit investment trusts (UITs) - Old Mutual’s wealth management operation has reached deal to acquire UK investment manager Quilter Cheviot for £585m - Northern Trust has opened a representative office in Seoul, South Korea, following regulatory approval from the Financial Services Commission (FSC) - KfW IPEX-Bank is supporting a large-scale innovation project in Europe with a loan of €75m. Within the framework of a multi-year investment programme, the international chemical group Borealis is pursuing research and development of plastics raw materials at its facilities in Linz, Porvoo (Finland) und Stenungsund (Sweden) - The Bank of Russia will start providing the market with dollars and euros at weekly foreign-exchange repo auctions in late October to smooth out the ruble rate volatility, the central bank said today. The central bank says it will provide up to $50bn to the banking sector by end-2016 in a move aimed at fulfilling demand for foreign currencies at a time when external borrowing markets are effectively closed to Russian companies and lenders due to Western sanctions. The ruble, recently driven to all-time lows by falling oil prices and domestic demand for hard currency, recovered to around RUB45.9 against the euro-dollar basket from levels of RUB46 seen before the central bank's statement.

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Regulatory Update

The Euro: Preparing for the Unthinkable

Tuesday, 26 June 2012 Written by 
The Euro: Preparing for the Unthinkable One day in 1974, payments failed to move across the leading US dollar payment mechanism, CHIPS, operated by The New York Clearing House. Earlier that day, German regulators had closed a relatively small bank, Bank Herstatt, in Cologne.  Following this closure, banks stopped sending funds to one another; no bank knew whether the recipient might have exposure to Herstatt (and thus might experience unacceptable losses). To their credit, bank regulators spent much of the following decades addressing this risk, both in the payments market and in the FX market through the CLS system. http://www.ftseglobalmarkets.com/

One day in 1974, payments failed to move across the leading US dollar payment mechanism, CHIPS, operated by The New York Clearing House. Earlier that day, German regulators had closed a relatively small bank, Bank Herstatt, in Cologne.  Following this closure, banks stopped sending funds to one another; no bank knew whether the recipient might have exposure to Herstatt (and thus might experience unacceptable losses). To their credit, bank regulators spent much of the following decades addressing this risk, both in the payments market and in the FX market through the CLS system.

Although I was General Counsel of the Clearing House and CLS, participating in these and related developments, it took the events of 2007 and 2008 to drive home their significance. Now, with  a slow-down in the world economy and even the possible demise of the euro, do we once again need to prepare for the unthinkable? And how can any individual firm do so?

At the very least firms need to recognize that these types of risks cannot be managed in silos; there must be a cohesive approach across all business areas and breakpoints – from liquidity and credit risks to regulatory and reputational risks.  If the euro is redenominated, businesses may face market closures, reversion to and rapid devaluation of legacy currencies, mandatory bank holidays, restrictions on convertibility, and a lack of liquidity.  A scenario analysis can help identify how such developments might impact key clients, key markets, and most critically –in the short term – liquidity needs. The information gathered in this analysis should be factored into credit and risk management plans. But most importantly, it needs to be communicated to key people. Your board and your staff need to be prepared for various scenarios, and you may also need to communicate with regulators and suppliers.  A careful analysis of and preparation for all contingencies can help a firm survive even the unthinkable.

Deborah Prutzman

Deborah Prutzman is the founder and CEO of The Regulatory Fundamentals Group (RFG), a New York-based firm that designs and implements business and risk solutions for alternative asset managers and institutional investors. RFG's senior-led team employs a robust suite of tools, including practical alerts on new and potential industry developments and its powerful RFG Pathfinder® knowledge management platform which simplifies the challenges of operating in a regulated environment.  To learn more about The Regulatory Fundamentals Group call (212) 537-4058, email a representative at Information@RegFG.com or visit RegFG.com

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