Financial Institutions and Markets (J)
In today’s financial markets, derivative instruments comprises an essential part of capital market activities, both for banks and intermediary institutions, as well as the companies aiming to manage their portfolio risk. Furthermore, almost 90% of such derivative transactions are being carried out over the counter (OTC), meaning that the derivative instruments are traded in a context other than through a formal exchange (e.g. Borsa İstanbul). The new Capital Markets Law numbered 6362 (“CML”) and the regulations issued thereunder, while setting out the framework in which derivative transactions can be carried out over the counter without any intermediation, also introduce new rules so as to allow intermediary institutions to take part as dealers in this market.
To perform as a trader (broker) of commodities in the UAE the company (a legal entity incorporated according to the UAE law or foreign company incorporated outside the UAE) needs to carry out the necessary procedures to obtain a membership from DGCX (Dubai Gold and Commodities Exchange).
An order for security for costs is never made lightly by the courts, notwithstanding that they have a broad discretion to do so. That discretion extends to an application to vary a security for costs order already in place. The recent case of Austcorp Project No. 20 Pty Limited v The Trust Co (PTAL) Limited, in the matter of Bellpac Pty Limited (Receivers and Managers Appointed) (in liq) (No 4)  FCA 850, highlights the issues to be considered when seeking to vary a security for costs order.
Contact: Monica Clarke Platt; Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP (Delaware & Pennsylvania, USA)
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last week issued two proposals aimed at weakening and discouraging arbitration clauses in contracts for consumer financial products. First, the CFPB proposes prohibiting the application of arbitration clauses to class actions proceeding in court. Specifically, the Bureau is considering a requirement that arbitration clauses in covered consumer financial contracts provide that the arbitration agreement is inapplicable to putative class actions filed in court unless and until class certification is denied or the class claims are dismissed. This proposal could significantly increase putative class claims in the consumer finance sector (indeed, increasing access to class litigation appears to be the Bureau’s goal). Second, the Bureau seeks to require entities that use arbitration agreements in their contracts to submit to the Bureau notice of claims filed in arbitration proceedings and arbitration awards, potentially for publication.
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Contact: Camden R. Webb; Williams Mullen’s (North Carolina & Virginia, USA)
A federal court in Washington DC has ruled that a lawsuit against federal bank regulators challenging “Operation Choke Point” may proceed. Operation Choke Point is a program begun by the United States Department of Justice that was designed to “choke off” banking services to persons who were engaging in illegal activities, such as money laundering. According to the original intent of the program, the DOJ would use the federal banking laws to crack down on banks that, according to the DOJ, knew or should have known that their customers were engaging in unlawful conduct. However, after the program was implemented, some banks severed ties with bank customers of certain industries even where there was no indication that these industry members were engaged in anything but lawful business. Then, evidence surfaced that the federal government was not only attempting to choke off banking services to illegal actors but was also using the federal bank regulatory regime to advise banks that it was too risky to do business with certain industries such as tobacco retailers, firearms and ammunition, and payday lending. Members of these industries lost banking relationships, which adversely affected their businesses.