Friday, January 13, 2012

In Case You Missed It: Report Says Proposed Defition of 'Swap Dealer' Will Cost Energy Companies Millions

January 12,2012.WASHINGTON. National Economic Research Associates, Inc. (NERA) has published an analysis of the costs that would be imposed by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) proposed definition of “swap dealer.”  NERA finds that, on average, the CFTC’s proposal will impose $388 million in incremental costs for each non-financial energy company regulated as a swap dealer. 

The CFTC has proposed a broad definition of swap dealers that would subject non-financial end-users, like farmer cooperatives and energy companies, to stringent regulations intended for large financial institutions. 

NERA’s report analyzes the costs of regulating non-financial energy companies as swap dealers, and finds that these businesses “will face significant increases in incremental costs, while little or no incremental benefit will accrue to over-the-counter (OTC) energy swaps markets and users of OTC energy swaps.”   

Moreover, NERA concluded that the CFTC “significantly underestimated” compliance costs.  NERA’s economists identified three primary flaws with CFTC’s cost-estimates, including a lack of quantitative estimates, a tendency to greatly understate costs, and a reliance on “presumed benefits that are speculative and unlikely to be realized.” 

To learn more about how end-users are being impacted by Dodd-Frank regulations, visit our Dodd-Frank issue page. 


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