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Benchmark reform and transition to risk-free rates
ICMA has been engaging with regulators and members on the global issue of benchmark reform for several years.

Most recently, ICMA’s focus is the development of Risk-Free Reference Rates (RFRs), which are being developed in response to recommendations by the Financial Stability Board (FSB) made to increase confidence in the reliability and integrity of interest rate benchmarks.

In particular, ICMA is a member of the Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates, with Paul Richards (Head of Market Practice and Regulatory Policy, ICMA) chairing a sub-group focusing on benchmark transition issues in bond markets. ICMA is also a non-voting member of the Working group on euro risk-free rates established by the ECB, the Belgian Financial Services and Markets Authority, ESMA and the European Commission. ICMA also participates in the National Working Group on Swiss Franc Reference Rates.

Set out below are links to official sector and ICMA information and materials on this topic.
 
 
International benchmark reform panel at the 50th ICMA AGM and Conference, 31 May 2018






Speeches
  • Speech given by Andrew Bailey, Chief Executive of the FCA, at Bloomberg, London on 12 July 2018: Interest rate benchmark reform: transition to a world without LIBOR
  • Opening Statement of Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo before the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission Market Risk Advisory Committee Meeting, Washington, D.C. on 12 July 2018: Opening Statement
  • Speech given by Steven Maijoor, Chair of the European Securities and Markets Authority at the 50th ICMA AGM and Conference, 31 May 2018: Towards benchmark stability and integrity
  • Speech given by Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England at the Bank of England Markets Forum, 24 May 2018: Staying Connected
  • Speech given by William C. Dudley, President and Chief Executive Officer, Federal Reserve Bank of New York at the Bank of England Markets Forum, 24 May 2018: The transition to a robust reference rate regime
  • Speech given by by Andrew Bailey, Chief Executive of the FCA, at the Association for Financial Markets in Europe, International Capital Market Association and International Swaps and Derivatives Association breakfast briefing, 1 March 2018: Recent developments in financial markets



Recent statements and other publications
  • US, September 2018: The Alternative Reference Rates Committee (ARRC) published frequently asked questions and an associated press release to build on efforts to engage and educate market participants and other stakeholders.
  • Euro area, September 2018: The private sector working group on euro risk-free rates recommended ESTER as the euro risk-free rate.
  • UK, July 2018: The Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates published a paper on new issuance of Sterling bonds referencing Libor.
  • UK, July 2018: The Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates published a consultation on term SONIA reference rates, together with a press release
  • Global, July 2018: The Financial Stability Board published a statement on interest rate benchmark reform – overnight risk-free rates and term rates, together with a press release.
  • US, July 2018: The Alternative Reference Rates Committee (ARRC) published non-binding guiding principles for consideration when drafting LIBOR fallback language for cash products, together with a press release.
  • UK, June 2018: The Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates published a provisional timeline with milestones for RFR transition in sterling markets.
  • US, March 2018: The Alternative Reference Rates Committee (ARRC) published its Second Report which discusses a “Paced Transition Plan”.



General information and materials:



Contacts:

Paul Richards
Managing Director, Head of Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; Member of ICMA's Executive Committee  
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0315
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

David Hiscock
Senior Director, Deputy Head, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Regulatory Policy Committee and to the ICMA Euro Commercial Paper Committee (ECP).
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0321
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

Charlotte Bellamy
Director, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Legal & Documentation Committee and related groups.
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0340
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD
22 August 2018
Briefing call for ICMA members on the transition to risk-free rates
(ICMA members only)
The call highlighted recent developments related to ICMA’s work and involvement in the Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates, for which Paul Richards, Head of Market Practice and Regulatory Policy, chairs a sub-group focusing on benchmark transition issues in bond markets. We also touched on developments in the euro area (where ICMA is a non-voting member of the Working group on euro risk-free rates) and Switzerland (where ICMA participates in the National Working Group on Swiss Franc Reference Rates).


5 July 2018
The transition to risk-free rates in the international bond market by Paul Richards, ICMA. Originally published in the ICMA Quarterly Report, Third Quarter 2018.

12 April 2018
The transition from IBORs to near risk-free rates by Paul Richards, David Hiscock and Charlotte Bellamy, ICMA. Originally published in the ICMA Quarterly Report, Second Quarter 2018.

10 January 2018
The transition from LIBOR by Paul Richards, ICMA. Originally published in the ICMA Quarterly Report, First Quarter 2018.

12 October 2017
Benchmark reform and the future of LIBOR: implications for the primary bond markets by Catherine Wade, ICMA. Originally published in the ICMA Quarterly Report, Fourth Quarter 2017

29 September 2017
ICMA response to the Bank of England White Paper “SONIA as the RFR and approaches to adoption”

7 September 2017
Briefing call for ICMA members: Benchmark Reform and the Future of LIBOR - implications for the primary bond markets 
(ICMA members only)
Following the speech by Andrew Bailey of the FCA on 27 July 2017 on the future of LIBOR, Catherine Wade and Ruari Ewing of ICMA gave an overview of recent regulatory initiatives in relation to benchmark reform, and in particular the implications for contracts referencing LIBOR, on a briefing call for members.




Contacts:

Paul Richards
Managing Director, Head of Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; Member of ICMA's Executive Committee  
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0315
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

David Hiscock
Senior Director, Deputy Head, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Regulatory Policy Committee and to the ICMA Euro Commercial Paper Committee (ECP).
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0321
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

Charlotte Bellamy
Director, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Legal & Documentation Committee and related groups.
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0340
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD
19 September 2018
ISDA Benchmarks Supplement, associated FAQ and press release

12 July 2018
ISDA consultation on Certain Aspects of Fallbacks for Derivatives Referencing GBP LIBOR, CHF LIBOR, JPY LIBOR, TIBOR, Euroyen TIBOR and BBSW

15 February 2017
ICMA response to the ICE Benchmark Administration Limited Additional Consultation on ICE LIBOR Evolution

31 March 2016
ICMA response to ESMA Discussion Paper on Benchmarks Regulation

29 January 2016
ICMA response to EMMI Consultative Position Paper on the Evolution of Euribor

16 October 2015
ICMA response to the ICE Benchmark Administration Limited Second Position Paper on the Evolution of ICE LIBOR

19 September 2014
ICMA response to the ICE Benchmark Administration Error Policy Consultation

29 November 2013
ICMA response to to ILOC / BBALIBOR Joint Consultation Paper on LIBOR Re-fixing

16 May 2013
ICMA response to IOSCO’s consultation on "Principles for Financial Benchmarks"

11 February 2013
ICMA response to IOSCO’s consultation on "Financial Benchmarks"
ICMA response to ESMA-EBA’s joint consultation on “Principles for Benchmark Setting Processes in the EU”

6 December 2012
ICMA response to the BBA’s consultation on "Strengthening LIBOR"

27 November 2012
ICMA response to the European Commission’s "Consultation Document on the Regulation of Indices"

7 September 2012
ICMA submission in relation to the August 2012 initial discussion paper “The Wheatley Review of LIBOR”




Contacts:

Paul Richards
Managing Director, Head of Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; Member of ICMA's Executive Committee  
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0315
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

David Hiscock
Senior Director, Deputy Head, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Regulatory Policy Committee and to the ICMA Euro Commercial Paper Committee (ECP).
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0321
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

Charlotte Bellamy
Director, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Legal & Documentation Committee and related groups.
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0340
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD
25 June 2018
IBOR Global Benchmark Report 2018
Download the press release

1 February 2018
IBOR Global Benchmark Survey 2018 Transition Roadmap
Download the press release

31 January 2018
Joint trade association letter to the FSB regarding implementation of risk free rates and transition away from LIBOR: key issues for the global financial markets




Contacts:

Paul Richards
Managing Director, Head of Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; Member of ICMA's Executive Committee  
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0315
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

David Hiscock
Senior Director, Deputy Head, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Regulatory Policy Committee and to the ICMA Euro Commercial Paper Committee (ECP).
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0321
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD

Charlotte Bellamy
Director, Market Practice and Regulatory Policy; secretary to the ICMA Legal & Documentation Committee and related groups.
Direct line: +44 20 7213 0340
EMAIL | DOWNLOAD BUSINESS CARD