The Future for the Global Securities Market: Legal and Regulatory Aspects

By Fidelis Oditah | Go to book overview

15
Tackling Systemic Risk on Markets: Barings and Beyond
ANDREW M. WHITTAKER
INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

Introduction
In these comments, I plan to focus on one particular area of regulatory endeavour -- protection against systemic risk affecting markets -- and how it is being addressed as part of the follow-up to the Barings case. This will help us to consider how far what is being done internationally in that context can be described under the headings 'co-operation' and 'convergence', and how far it could be said to indicate something more, which might be described, perhaps rather grandly, as the beginnings of the emergence of a world regulatory order.
Business Background
First, it will be helpful to look at the business background. The global financial markets are changing very rapidly. Key trends from the viewpoint of market regulation are:
• increasing internationalisation of investor involvement (especially US and German pension funds);
• increasing interchangeability of products, so trading strategies can be achieved through derivatives as well as equities;
• increasing complexity of investment products and trading, particularly cross-border;
• concentration of trading among a small group of multinational firms;
• development of risk management techniques and the trading of risk;
• a greater reliance on technology to trade and to manage risk;
• entrepreneurialism and risk-taking in uncertain environments;
• increasing use of screen-based trading systems to extend marketplaces beyond a single jurisdiction;

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