Agencies extend comment period on Volcker rule

Four federal agencies today extended until February 13, 2012, the comment period on a proposal to implement the so-called Volcker Rule of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

The Dodd-Frank Act requires regulators to implement certain prohibitions and restrictions on the ability of a banking entity and nonbank financial company to engage in proprietary trading and have certain interests in, or relationships with, a hedge fund or private equity fund. The comment period was extended as part of a coordinated interagency effort to allow interested persons more time to analyze the issues and prepare their comments. Originally, comments were due by January 13, 2012.

The proposal was issued by the Federal Reserve Board, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association offered this statement on the extension:

SIFMA today released the following statement from Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr., executive vice president, public policy and advocacy, in response to an announcement by the Federal Reserve, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency that they will extend the deadline for comments on proposed regulations implementing the Volcker Rule.

“Today’s announcement that regulators will extend the comment period will allow commentators sufficient time to adequately address a very complex rule proposal that includes nearly 1,400 questions. This extension also allows commentators the time to provide regulators with the necessary information to ensure crafting a rule that does not unnecessarily impede liquidity in capital and credit markets at the expense of capital formation and economic growth. We also appreciate the regulators’ approach to this extension, which will facilitate better coordination with the CFTC as they look to publish their own proposal in the near future. We thank the regulators for recognizing the complex nature of this rulemaking and look forward to continuing to work with them as they seek to implement this rule and the many others mandated by Dodd-Frank.”

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