DTCC Sues CFTC over “Anti-Competitive Swap Trading Data Rules”

The Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. (DTCC) sued the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Friday claiming that the derivatives regulator made “anti-competitive rules,” regarding swap trading data, that favor two rival companies.

The lawsuit filed by the DTCC, a financial services group that deals with post-trade transactions, was made in response to the CFTC’s March ruling to allow CME Group Inc. (CME) and Intercontinental Exchange, which are both exchanges that clear trades, to send client data to their own proprietary data warehouses.

CME and IntercontinentalExchange sought the ruling on the grounds that they were best positioned to manage the data and risk on behalf of their customers.

The DTCC, who runs its own data warehouse, argued that the ruling was anti-competitive because it violates the Dodd Frank Act’s requirement for a more transparent and robust compliance regime for swap transaction execution, clearing, and data reporting.

In a statement given to Bloomberg Businessweek, Larry Thomson, DTCC’s general counsel, said, “By approving these rules, CFTC changed its original adherence to the pro-competitive principles of Dodd-Frank and instead sanctioned anticompetitive behavior that allowed these clearing houses to require reporting of cleared swap data to their captive swap data repository.”

The DTCC’s argument is that it is unfair for these exchanges to send data to their own data repositories. The DTCC want clients to have a choice of where their data goes because that would be in the spirit of the Dodd Frank Act.

The DTCC also voiced their displeasure in a statement given to Reuters, saying, “The commission failed to properly consider the anticompetitive effects of (the rules), and did not comply with the legally required administrative or cost-benefit analysis procedures.”


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