Joint Associations Committee Releases Translations of Combined Principles for Retail Structured Products
LONDON, November 23, 2011 – The Joint Associations Committee (JAC) on Retail Structured Products today announced the translation into French and German of the set of principles for managing the provider-distributor relationship (PD Principles) in retail structured products and the principles for managing the distributor-individual investor relationship (DI Principles), originally published in July 2007 and July 2008 respectively. The Combined Principles were drafted with the intent of achieving fair treatment for individual investors and clarifying the respective roles and responsibilities of the various parties involved in the creation and distribution process.
The years since 2008 have seen increased recognition by governments and regulators of the importance of a vibrant and well-functioning retail structured products market.
A combination of demographic trends and the impact of the financial crisis have resulted in a greater onus on individuals to take responsibility for their long-term financial planning and, in particular, to make private financial provision for their retirement. Retail structured products can play a key role in meeting such increased investment demand. However, the financial crisis has also impaired investor confidence. Such considerations have led to regulatory initiatives designed to improve investor protection in multiple jurisdictions.
While originally published before the financial crisis, the Principles address many of the same issues as those sought to be addressed by such initiatives and it is in this context that the JAC took the step of re-releasing the Principles in May 2011 in order both to encourage their usage and to help inform the current debate. The translation of the Principles into French and German will further advance these aims.
Tim Hailes, Chair of the Joint Associations Committee, said: “The JAC strongly supports regulatory initiatives designed to guarantee the fair treatment of investors; our decision to re-release and now translate into French and German the JAC Principles demonstrates our desire to promote good outcomes for individual investors.”
He continued: “Each set of Principles is the result of long and careful deliberation, and the JAC is pleased that they will now be more readily accessible to a wider audience of financial firms and policymakers. The JAC will continue to be actively involved in the debate about how best to serve investor interests.”
The French and German translations of the Combined Principles for Retail Structured Products, as well as the original Principles, are available on the ISDA website.
About the Joint Associations Committee
The JAC is sponsored by multiple associations with an interest in structured products, including the International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA), the International Capital Market Association (ICMA), the Association for Financial Markets in Europe (AFME), the British Bankers’ Association, the Asia Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association (ASIFMA), SIFMA, the Associazione Italiana Intermediari Mobiliari (ASSOSIM) and the Institute of International Finance, Inc. (IIF).The members of the JAC comprise most of the major firms (both financial institutions and law firms) involved in the creation and, to some extent, distribution of structured securities which are distributed to retail investors.
Since 1985, ISDA has worked to make the global over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives markets safer and more efficient. Today, ISDA is one of the world’s largest global financial trade associations, with over 825 member institutions from 57 countries on six continents. These members include a broad range of OTC derivatives market participants: global, international and regional banks, asset managers, energy and commodities firms, government and supranational entities, insurers and diversified financial institutions, corporations, law firms, exchanges, clearinghouses and other service providers. Information about ISDA and its activities is available on the Association’s web site: www.isda.org.
ICMA represents financial institutions active in the international capital markets; its members are located in 50 countries, including all the world’s main financial centres. ICMA’s market conventions and standards have been the pillars of the international debt market for over 40 years, providing the framework of rules governing market practice which facilitate the orderly functioning of the market. ICMA actively promotes the efficiency and cost effectiveness of the capital markets by bringing together market participants and regulatory authorities. For more information see: www.icmagroup.org.
AFME (Association for Financial Markets in Europe) promotes fair, orderly, and efficient European wholesale capital markets and provides leadership in advancing the interests of all market participants. AFME represents a broad array of European and global participants in the wholesale financial markets. Its members comprise pan-EU and global banks as well as key regional banks, brokers, law firms, investors and other financial market participants. AFME participates in a global alliance with the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) in the US, and the Asia Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association through the GFMA (Global Financial Markets Association). For more information please visit the AFME website, www.afme.eu.
About the British Bankers’ Association
The BBA is the leading association for the UK banking and financial services sector, speaking for 201 banking members from 50 countries on the full range of UK and international banking issues and engaging with 55 associated professional firms. Collectively providing the full range of services, our member banks make up the world’s largest international banking centre, operating some 150 million accounts for UK customers and contributing £50 billion annually to UK economic growth.
The Asia Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association (ASIFMA) is an independent association that promotes the development of liquid, efficient and transparent capital markets in Asia and facilitates their orderly integration into the global financial system. ASIFMA priorities are driven by over 40 member companies involved in Asian capital markets, including global and regional banks, securities dealers, brokers, asset managers, credit rating agencies, law firms, trading and analytic platforms, and clearance and settlement providers. ASIFMA is located in Hong Kong and works closely with global alliance partners: the Global Financial Markets Association (GFMA), the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) and the Association for Financial Markets in Europe (AFME). More information about ASIFMA can be found at: www.asifma.org.
The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) brings together the shared interests of hundreds of securities firms, banks and asset managers. SIFMA’s mission is to support a strong financial industry, investor opportunity, capital formation, job creation and economic growth, while building trust and confidence in the financial markets. SIFMA, with offices in New York and Washington, D.C., is the U.S. regional member of the Global Financial Markets Association (GFMA). For more information, visit http://www.sifma.org.
ASSOSIM (Associazione Italiana Intermediari Mobiliari) is the Italian Association of Financial Intermediaries, which represents the majority of financial intermediaries acting in the Italian Markets. ASSOSIM has nearly 80 members represented by banks, investment firms, branches of foreign brokerage houses, active in the Investment Services Industry, mostly in primary and secondary markets of equities, bonds and derivatives, for some 82% of the total trading volume.
The Institute of International Finance, Inc. (IIF) is the world’s only global association of financial institutions. Created in 1983 in response to the international debt crisis, the IIF has evolved to meet the changing needs of the financial community. Members include most of the world’s largest commercial banks and investment banks, as well as a growing number of insurance companies and investment management firms. Among the Institute’s Associate members are multinational corporations, trading companies, export credit agencies, and multilateral agencies. Approximately half of the Institute’s members are European-based financial institutions, and representation from the leading financial institutions in emerging market countries is also increasing steadily. Today the Institute has more than 400 members headquartered in more than 70 countries.
The Futures and Options Association (FOA) is the industry association for some 170 international firms and institutions that engage in the carrying on of derivatives business, particularly in relation to exchange-traded transactions. The FOA’s membership includes banks, brokerage houses and other financial institutions, commodity trade houses, power and energy companies, exchanges and clearing houses, as well as a number of firms and organisations supplying services into the futures and options sector.
About UK SPA
The UK Structured Products Association (UK SPA) is an organisation established by companies that create and distribute structured products to the UK financial services market in order to provide a useful and responsive source of information, education and comment on structured products by promoting their contribution to effective financial planning.
The Association’s formation is a direct response to the members’ belief that structured products are sometimes misunderstood and misrepresented and that this lack of understanding can prevent structured products forming an integral part of financial planning for investors.
The UK SPA is committed to publishing research, information and educational material about structured products and so create greater acceptance about their potential.
The UK SPA is not a commercial organisation and education and research are its core activities.