Introduction to the Global Master Repurchase Agreement - Online Self-Study
New dates TBC - e-mail to register your interest




This course analyses how repo transactions operate within the framework provided by the Global Master Repurchase Agreement (GMRA) and highlights the issues that need to be addressed by users. The GMRA has underpinned the development of the cross border repo markets since its first publication in 1992 with subsequent revised versions in 1995, 2000 and 2011.

The course provides a clear practical context to documentation and underlying issues, starting with a rigorous introduction to the fundamental legal and operational characteristics of repo, transactional uses and markets. The main body of the course involves a detailed review of this master agreement and how it structures risk and operational management. The course also examines the role of and special issues posed by key market infrastructures such as electronic trading venues, triparty collateral management and central clearing through CCPs, and new regulation.

The course is introduced and co-ordinated by Richard Comotto, who is the author of ICMA’s European repo survey, its Guide to Best Practice in the European Repo Market and its Repo FAQs. Other speakers are legal and documentation professionals, and operational specialists from ICMA, Ashurst LLP,  LCH Limited and Euroclear.

Course Outcomes

By completing this course you will be able to:

  • Explain why master agreements are necessary in general and the advantages of using GMRA in particular. 
  • Understand how the GMRA is organized and be able to navigate their way around the document to find provisions relevant to particular issues.
  • Become aware of the ICMA’s Guide to Best Practice in the European Repo Market and its role in relation to the GMRA and market procedures.
  • Understand the dual nature of repo as a sale-and-repurchase legal structure performing the economic functions of a secured loan and apply this insight by answering questions about repo from first principles.
  • Compare and contrast repurchase transactions and buy/sell-backs.
  • Appreciate the flexibility of the GMRA to allow the varied structuring of repos.
  • Explain the role of haircuts and initial margins, compare and contrast them, and apply them to exposure calculations.
  • Demonstrate, by reference to the GMRA, the calculation of transaction and net exposures, including net margin, and the concepts of Repricing and Adjustment.
  • Outline, by reference to the GMRA, the post-trade operational procedures and contingency provisions in the GMRA for substitution of collateral, corporate events and failed settlement.
  • Explain, by reference, the default procedures under the GMRA.
  • Recognize the key legal issues affecting repos, including legal cases, issues that might arise from the use of the GMRA in foreign jurisdictions and the potential impact of Brexit; and they should know how to use legal opinions.
  • Understand the role of tri-party collateral management, what tri-party agents do and do not do, and how use of a tri-party agent affects use of the GMRA.
  • Understand what is meant by central clearing, the role of a CCP and how use of a CCP affects use of the GMRA.
  • Identify and outline the key capital, leverage, liquidity regulations applying to repos in Europe as well as settlement and reporting requirements.
  • Explain the potential impact of sustainability requirements on the use of collateral in repo.

Who should attend?
The course uses the GMRA as a framework to provide a structured approach to understanding the instrument, its usage and the market. No legal expertise is required. It can therefore be useful, not just for legal and documentation staff, but also for front office, risk management, operational, compliance, audit and regulatory personnel.

Certification and Programme Recognition

This course has been approved by the Securities & Futures Commission of Hong Kong for Continuous Professional Training (CPT).
ICMA is also a member of the CPD® Certification Service which helps organisations formalise knowledge into a structured and recognised approach to meet professional development expectations.

ICMA recommends that 20 learning hours can be associated with this course, based on attended/undertaken hours of study required to successfully complete the learning outcomes.

The course is certified by ICMA. A Certificate of Completion will be awarded to those who meet minimum attendance requirements. Please note that while course recordings will be made available to delegates, it is a course requirement that delegates meet the minimum attendance requirments to be eligible for a certificate. Please contact if you have any questions regarding certification.

Please note that your course certificate of attendance or completion should be sufficient to satisfy any professional development requirements – if you require further evidence, please contact us at


Members: EUR 1,150 + VAT (if applicable)
Non-members: EUR 1,650 + VAT (if applicable)

Course Trainers

Richard Comotto

Securities Lending & Borrowing (SLB) – The Fundamentals 
What is Securities Lending?
The Purpose: Why Do Lenders Lend & Borrowers Borrow?
Participants & Structure
Trading Strategies
SLB Trade Lifecycle - An Overview
Short Selling, Naked Short Selling
Locates, Trade Execution & Fails
Corporate Events
The Marketplace – Participants & Stakeholders
Lenders, Borrowers and Intermediaries 
The Lender’s Perspective: Motivations and Considerations
The Borrower’s Perspective: Motivations and Considerations
Global custodians
Third-party lending agents
Central counterparties
SLB Trade Lifecycle
Pre-trading, Locates
Trade execution
Mark to Market 
Margin calls
Recall/return of lent settlements
Fees & Billing
Assets & Collateral
Equity vs Fixed Income 
Fundamental collateral concepts
Margin: Purpose & use 
Types of collateral
Legal Documentation
Securities lending agency agreement
Updating Books & Records
Securities bookkeeping: Definition & purpose
Importance of updating books & records
Updating books and records for lent/borrowed securities, cash and non-cash collateral, fees and rebates
SLB and Corporate Actions
Corporate actions: Overview 
*Cash dividends
*Lent securities
*Short sale proceeds
*Lent/borrowed equity
Withholding tax
Risks in Securities Lending & Borrowing 
Market Risk
Credit Risk
Operational Risk
Legal Risk
Reputational Risk 
EU short selling & financial transactions tax
Reporting to a central trade repository
Recent SLB Scandals & Controversies
The Lehman saga uncover

Online Course

Delegates who sign up to online courses will have access for 6 months to enable them to take advantage of the additional online resources, discussion boards and other functions of our new digital learning platform.

Online courses start at the beginning of each month – please note that payment must be received BEFORE access to these courses are provided.

Next dates TBC
Register your interest for this course at

Online course fees

ICMA Members: EUR 1,150 + VAT (if applicable)
ICMA Non-members: EUR 1,650 + VAT (if applicable)

Costs include full access to the online campus, associated learning materials and the examination fee.

Please note that:

  • Payment for online courses must be received before the start of the course.
  • All payments must be made in Euro.
  • Invoices for single registrations are subject to an additional Euro 50 to cover administration costs*. No administration fee applies for invoices covering two or more registrations.

*Administration costs cover the provision of supporting documents, which are often requested along with the invoice, to become an approved supplier.

As an indicative guide, we would recommend a total of 180 study hours is required to go through the material. Please note this is an approximate guide only.


Should you have any queries, please contact

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Title transfer
The repo buyer
The repo seller
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Throughout the trade
At the end

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