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We spoke with Clare Dawson, chief executive of the Loan Market Association (LMA), David Cliffe of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) and Martin O'Donovan, deputy policy and technical director at the Association of Corporate Treasurers (ACT) about current trends in the banking and finance world and asked them to give us some insights into how their organisations are set to develop over the next year.
Clare Dawson (CD): From a commercial perspective, national and European discussions regarding the use of benchmarks in financial instruments and financial contracts is an on-going hot topic for banking and finance lawyers, and will continue to feature as a 'hot topic' for the foreseeable future. In addition, deleveraging will continue as a hot topic for 2014 as banks restructure in order to comply with new capital requirements under Basel III and CRD IV. From an insurance perspective, plans are underway for the implementation of Solvency II, with the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority having recently released draft 'Implementing Technical Standards' for consultation. Banking and finance lawyers are, therefore, likely to be called upon in upcoming months to advise clients on the impact Solvency II will have on their capital portfolios.
David Cliffe (DC): I cannot answer for banking and finance lawyers, but I would imagine that the same topics concern them as their client base, which this year includes the implementation of the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) regime for over the counter (OTC) derivatives. At present key issues in this space include the reporting requirement which firms are having to meet, the approval of central counterparties (CCPs), the ongoing supervision of trade repositories and also the preparation for the introduction of the clearing obligations.
Martin O'Donovan (MO): Banking and finance lawyers working with their treasury colleagues in non-financial companies now have a new angle to think about, namely becoming
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1. Banking and finance lawyer with particular experience in asset finance
2. Likes Wales, wine, sport and anything else that means he doesn’t have the time to have to write personal information about himself
3. Thinks the law is a far broader topic than any of his family and friends who do not work in law
Neil specialises in banking and asset finance transactions with a particular emphasis in finance for shipping, aviation and renewable energy, as well as providing corporate transactional support. He trained and qualified at TLT LLP and spent a further four years working as a finance solicitor, acting for borrowers and lenders before joining the Asset Finance team at DLA Piper (UK) LLP.
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