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    OFR Adopts Data Collection Rule on Centrally Cleared Repo Transactions

    February 20, 2019

    OFR adopted a final rule to establish a data collection covering centrally cleared funding transactions in the U.S. repurchase agreement (repo) market. OFR has worked closely with FED, SEC, and others in drafting the rule. The rule will become effective from April 22, 2019. OFR also published the instructions for preparation of the report of centrally cleared transactions in the U.S. repo market. The collection is expected to begin in mid-October.

    The OFR SFT-1 report is filed on a daily basis and collects data on repo transactions cleared through a covered clearing agency acting as a central counterparty (CCP) for repo transactions. The report consists of three parts: Schedule 1 collects data on outstanding general collateral trades; Schedule 2 collects data on the securities used to settle netted general collateral obligations; and Schedule 3 collects data on outstanding specific-security trades. FED will act as the collection agent of OFR, with required data to be submitted directly to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRBNY). All respondents must submit their completed report using the eFeds system of FED or any successor technology identified by the FRBNY. FRBNY will also provide technical assistance to respondents on using this or any successor system.

    The daily collection will enhance the ability of the Financial Stability Oversight Council to identify and monitor potential risks to U.S. financial stability by closing the data gap related to centrally cleared repo transactions. The collection will also support the calculation of certain reference rates, particularly alternatives to the U.S. dollar London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). LIBOR has been used as a benchmark to set interest rates on trillions of dollars of home mortgages, private student loans, corporate loans, derivatives, and other financial products. LIBOR participation declined after LIBOR-related misconduct, creating the need by industry and regulators for an alternative. As a result of this need, FED formed the industry-led Alternative Reference Rates Committee, which selected the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) as the preferred LIBOR alternative. Cleared repo data from the collection will be used to enhance the production of the SOFR. The data collection will help inform U.S. financial regulators and market participants about potential risks in the financial system, while helping to fill an important need for a LIBOR alternative with minimal regulatory burden.

    Following a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on July 10, 2018, OFR received a handful of substantive comments—all supporting the proposed collection and citing its benefits. The rule requires the submission of information by central counterparties with average daily total open repo commitments of at least USD 50 billion. The Fixed Income Clearing Corporation would be the only market participant required to report if the collection began today, but other firms could meet the eligibility criteria for reporting in the future.

     

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    Effective Date: April 22, 2019

    Keywords: Americas, US, Banking, Securities, Repo, Central Clearing, CCP, SFT-1, Reporting, SOFR, LIBOR, Data Collection, FED, SEC, OFR

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