From the Regulators

The CSA and Bank of Canada have developed guidance to clarify new global standards in the Canadian context

By James Langton |

New global standards are coming to Canadian firms that provide critical financial market infrastructure functions, such as clearing and settlement.

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and the Bank of Canada on Thursday both published proposed new policies that are designed to adopt international standards for infrastructure firms. The global standards, which were first developed by the Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems (CPSS) and the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), aims to raise the international standards for payment, clearing, deposit, reporting and settlement systems. 

The CSA published a proposed new rule that adopts the global standards as ongoing requirements for recognized clearing agencies; it also formalizes a framework for recognizing or exempting clearing agencies seeking to operate in Canada.

The Bank of Canada published draft policy guidance on various risk-management standards, including collateral, general business risk, custody and investment risk, and disclosure. Guidance related to governance and liquidity risk have also been republished to align with CSA processes, the Bank notes.

Additionally, the CSA and the central bank have developed supplementary guidance to clarify certain aspects of the global standards in the Canadian context. They also pledge to continue  working together to develop further guidance, as necessary.

"It is critical that Canadian financial infrastructures maintain the highest standards in today's increasingly interconnected capital markets," said Bill Rice, chair of the CSA and chair and CEO of the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC). "This proposal brings a harmonized approach to clearing agency requirements in Canada and aligns them with international best practices."

The proposals are out for comment until Feb. 10, 2015. The regulators indicate that once the guidance is finalized they will consult with Canadian infrastructure firms about timelines for aligning with the new guidance.