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Rule

Commodity Pool Operators and Commodity Trading Advisors: Compliance Obligations

This article is a correction of an article that was published on 02/24/2012. View Uncorrected Article

Summary

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission is adopting amendments to its existing part 4 regulations and promulgating one new regulation regarding Commodity Pool Operators and Commodity Trading Advisors. The Commission is also adopting new data collections for CPOs and CTAs that are consistent with a data collection required under the Dodd-Frank Act for entities registered with both the Commission and the Securities and Exchange Commission. The adopted amendments rescind an exemption from registration as a CPO; rescind relief from the certification requirement for annual reports provided to operators of certain pools offered only to qualified eligible persons (“QEPs”); modify the criteria for claiming exclusion from the definition of CPO; and require the annual filing of notices claiming exemptive relief under several sections of the Commision's regulations. Finally, the adopted amendments include new risk disclosure requirements for CPOs and CTAs regarding swap transactions.

2. In 17 CFR Part 4, beginning on page 11283, in the second column, in 31st line of text, amendatory instructions 1-8 and their corresponding amendments to the Code of Federal Regulations are being republished as follows:

Unified Agenda

Commodity Pool Operators and Commodity Trading Advisors: Amendments to Compliance Obligations

3 actions from February 11th, 2011 to December 2011

  • February 11th, 2011
  • April 12th, 2011
    • NPRM Comment Period End
  • December 2011
    • Final Action
 

Table of Contents Back to Top

Editorial Note: Back to Top

FR DOC 2012-3390 appearing on pages 11252-11344 in the issue of Friday, February 24, 2012 is being partially republished due to numerous errors.

1. On page 11252, in the first column, the SUMMARY section is being republished in its entirety.

begin regulatory text

PART 4—COMMODITY POOL OPERATORS AND COMMODITY TRADING ADVISORS Back to Top

1.The authority citation for part 4 continues to read as follows:

Authority:

7 U.S.C. 1a, 2, 4, 6(c), 6b, 6c, 6l, 6m, 6n, 6o, 12a, and 23.

2.In § 4.5, add paragraphs (c)(2)(iii) and (c)(5) to read as follows:

§ 4.5 Exclusion from the definition of the term “commodity pool operator.”

* * * * *

(c) * * *

(2) * * *

(iii) Furthermore, if the person claiming the exclusion is an investment company registered as such under the Investment Company Act of 1940, then the notice of eligibility must also contain representations that such person will operate the qualifying entity as described in Rule 4.5(b)(1) in a manner such that the qualifying entity:

(A) Will use commodity futures or commodity options contracts, or swaps solely for bona fide hedging purposes within the meaning and intent of Rules 1.3(z)(1) and 151.5 (17 CFR 1.3(z)(1) and 151.5); Provided however, That in addition, with respect to positions in commodity futures or commodity option contracts, or swaps which do not come within the meaning and intent of Rules 1.3(z)(1) and 151.5, a qualifying entity may represent that the aggregate initial margin and premiums required to establish such positions will not exceed five percent of the liquidation value of the qualifying entity's portfolio, after taking into account unrealized profits and unrealized losses on any such contracts it has entered into; and, Provided further, That in the case of an option that is in-the-money at the time of purchase, the in-the-money amount as defined in Rule 190.01(x) (17 CFR 190.01(x)) may be excluded in computing such five percent; or

(B) The aggregate net notional value of commodity futures, commodity options contracts, or swaps positions not used solely for bona fide hedging purposes within the meaning and intent of Rules 1.3(z)(1) and 151.5 (17 CFR 1.3(z)(1) and 151.5), determined at the time the most recent position was established, does not exceed 100 percent of the liquidation value of the pool's portfolio, after taking into account unrealized profits and unrealized losses on any such positions it has entered into. For the purpose of this paragraph:

(1) The term “notional value” shall be calculated for each futures position by multiplying the number of contracts by the size of the contract, in contract units (taking into account any multiplier specified in the contract), by the current market price per unit, for each such option position by multiplying the number of contracts by the size of the contract, adjusted by its delta, in contract units (taking into account any multiplier specified in the contract), by the strike price per unit, for each such retail forex transaction, by calculating the value in U.S. Dollars for such transaction, at the time the transaction was established, excluding for this purpose the value in U.S. Dollars of offsetting long and short transactions, if any, and for any cleared swap by the value as determined consistent with the terms of 17 CFR part 45; and

(2) The person may net futures contracts with the same underlying commodity across designated contract markets and foreign boards of trade; and swaps cleared on the same designated clearing organization where appropriate; and (C) Will not be, and has not been, marketing participations to the public as or in a commodity pool or otherwise as or in a vehicle for trading in the commodity futures, commodity options, or swaps markets.

* * * * *

(5) Annual notice. Each person who has filed a notice of exclusion under this section must affirm on an annual basis the notice of exemption from registration, withdraw such exemption due to the cessation of activities requiring registration or exemption therefrom, or withdraw such exemption and apply for registration within 60 days of the calendar year end through National Futures Association's electronic exemption filing system.

* * * * *

3.In § 4.7:

a. Revise paragraphs (a)(3)(ix), (a)(3)(x), and (b)(3) to read as follows:

§ 4.7 Exemption from certain part 4 requirements for commodity pool operators with respect to offerings to qualified eligible persons and for commodity trading advisors with respect to advising qualified eligible persons.

* * * * *

(a) * * *

(3) * * *

(ix) A natural person whose individual net worth, or joint net worth with that person's spouse at the time of either his purchase in the exempt pool or his opening of an exempt account would qualify him as an accredited investor as defined in § 230.501(a)(5) of this title;

(x) A natural person who would qualify as an accredited investor as defined in § 203.501(a)(6) of this title;

* * * * *

(b) * * *

(3) Annual report relief. (i) Exemption from the specific requirements of § 4.22(c) of this part; Provided, that within 90 calendar days after the end of the exempt pool's fiscal year or the permanent cessation of trading, whichever is earlier, the commodity pool operator electronically files with the National Futures Association and distributes to each participant in lieu of the financial information and statements specified by that section, an annual report for the exempt pool, affirmed in accordance with § 4.22(h) which contains, at a minimum:

(A) A Statement of Financial Condition as of the close of the exempt pool's fiscal year (elected in accordance with § 4.22(g));

(B) A Statement of Operations for that year;

(C) Appropriate footnote disclosure and such further material information as may be necessary to make the required statements not misleading. For a pool that invests in other funds, this information must include, but is not limited to, separately disclosing the amounts of income, management and incentive fees associated with each investment in an investee fund that exceeds five percent of the pool's net assets. The income, management and incentive fees associated with an investment in an investee fund that is less than five percent of the pool's net assets may be combined and reported in the aggregate with the income, management and incentive fees of other investee funds that, individually, represent an investment of less than five percent of the pool's net assets. If the commodity pool operator is not able to obtain the specific amounts of management and incentive fees charged by an investee fund, the commodity pool operator must disclose the percentage amounts and computational basis for each such fee and include a statement that the CPO is not able to obtain the specific fee amounts for this fund;

(D) Where the pool is comprised of more than one ownership class or series, information for the series or class on which the financial statements are reporting should be presented in addition to the information presented for the pool as a whole; except that, for a pool that is a series fund structured with a limitation on liability among the different series, the financial statements are not required to include consolidated information for all series.

(ii) Legend. If a claim for exemption has been made pursuant to this section, the commodity pool operator must make a statement to that effect on the cover page of each annual report.

* * * * *

4.In § 4.13:

a. Revise paragraphs (a)(3)(ii)(B)(1) and (2);

b. Remove and reserve paragraph (a)(4);

c. Revise paragraph (b)(1)(ii);

d. Redesignate paragraph (b)(4) as paragraph (b)(5) and add new paragraph (b)(4); and

e. Revise paragraph (e)(2).

The revisions and additions read as follows:

§ 4.13 Exemption from registration as a commodity pool operator.

* * * * *

(a) * * *

(3) * * *

(ii) * * *

(B) * * *

(1) The term “notional value” shall be calculated for each futures position by multiplying the number of contracts by the size of the contract, in contract units (taking into account any multiplier specified in the contract), by the current market price per unit, for each such option position by multiplying the number of contracts by the size of the contract, adjusted by its delta, in contract units (taking into account any multiplier specified in the contract), by the strike price per unit, for each such retail forex transaction, by calculating the value in U.S. Dollars of such transaction, at the time the transaction was established, excluding for this purpose the value in U.S. Dollars of offsetting long and short transactions, if any, and for any cleared swap by the value as determined consistent with the terms of 17 CFR part 45; and

(2) The person may net futures contracts with the same underlying commodity across designated contract markets and foreign boards of trade; and swaps cleared on the same derivatives clearing organization where appropriate; and

* * * * *

(b) * * *

(2) * * *

(ii) Contain the section number pursuant to which the operator is filing the notice (i.e.,§ 4.13(a)(1), (2), or (3)) and represent that the pool will be operated in accordance with the criteria of that paragraph; and

* * * * *

(4) Annual Notice. Each person who has filed a notice of exemption from registration under this section must affirm on an annual basis the notice of exemption from registration, withdraw such exemption due to the cessation of activities requiring registration or exemption therefrom, or withdraw such exemption and apply for registration within 60 days of the calendar year end through National Futures Association's electronic exemption filing system.

* * * * *

(e) * * *

(2) If a person operates one or more commodity pools described in paragraph (a)(3) of this section, and one or more commodity pools for which it must be, and is, registered as a commodity pool operator, the person is exempt from the requirements applicable to a registered commodity pool operator with respect to the pool or pools described in paragraph (a)(3) of this section; Provided, That the person:

(i) Furnishes in written communication physically delivered or delivered through electronic transmission to each prospective participant in a pool described in paragraph (a)(3) of this section that it operates:

(A) A statement that it will operate the pool as if the person was exempt from registration as a commodity pool operator;

(B) A description of the criteria pursuant to which it will so operate the pool;

(ii) Complies with paragraph (c) of this section; and

(iii) Provides each existing participant in a pool that the person elects to operate as described in paragraph (a)(3) of this section a right to redeem the participant's interest in the pool, and informs each such participant of that right no later than the time the person commences to operate the pool as described in paragraph (a)(3) of this section.

* * * * *

5.In § 4.14:

a. Revise paragraph (a)(8)(i)(D); and

b. Redesignate paragraph (a)(8)(iii)(D) as (a)(8)(iii)(E) and add a new paragraph (a)(8)(iii)(D).

The revision and addition read as follows:

§ 4.14 Exemption from registration as a commodity trading adviser.

* * * * *

(a) * * *

(8) * * *

(i) * * *

(D) A commodity pool operator who has claimed an exemption from registration under § 4.13(a)(3), or, if registered as a commodity pool operator, who may treat each pool it operates that meets the criteria of § 4.13(a)(3) as if it were not so registered; and

* * * * *

(iii) * * *

(D) Annual notice. Each person who has filed a notice of exemption from registration under this section must affirm on an annual basis the notice of exemption from registration, withdraw such exemption due to the cessation of activities requiring registration or exemption therefrom, or withdraw such exemption and apply for registration within 60 days of the calendar year end through National Futures Association's electronic exemption filing system.

* * * * *

6.In § 4.24, add paragraph (b)(5) to read as follows:

§ 4.24 General disclosures required.

* * * * *

(b) * * *

(5) If the pool may engage in swaps, the Risk Disclosure Statement must further state:

SWAPS TRANSACTIONS, LIKE OTHER FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS, INVOLVE A VARIETY OF SIGNIFICANT RISKS. THE SPECIFIC RISKS PRESENTED BY A PARTICULAR SWAP TRANSACTION NECESSARILY DEPEND UPON THE TERMS OF THE TRANSACTION AND YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES. IN GENERAL, HOWEVER, ALL SWAPS TRANSACTIONS INVOLVE SOME COMBINATION OF MARKET RISK, CREDIT RISK, COUNTERPARTY CREDIT RISK, FUNDING RISK, LIQUIDITY RISK, AND OPERATIONAL RISK.

HIGHLY CUSTOMIZED SWAPS TRANSACTIONS IN PARTICULAR MAY INCREASE LIQUIDITY RISK, WHICH MAY RESULT IN A SUSPENSION OF REDEMPTIONS. HIGHLY LEVERAGED TRANSACTIONS MAY EXPERIENCE SUBSTANTIAL GAINS OR LOSSES IN VALUE AS A RESULT OF RELATIVELY SMALL CHANGES IN THE VALUE OR LEVEL OF AN UNDERLYING OR RELATED MARKET FACTOR.

IN EVALUATING THE RISKS AND CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS ASSOCIATED WITH A PARTICULAR SWAP TRANSACTION, IT IS IMPORTANT TO CONSIDER THAT A SWAP TRANSACTION MAY BE MODIFIED OR TERMINATED ONLY BY MUTUAL CONSENT OF THE ORIGINAL PARTIES AND SUBJECT TO AGREEMENT ON INDIVIDUALLY NEGOTIATED TERMS. THEREFORE, IT MAY NOT BE POSSIBLE FOR THE COMMODITY POOL OPERATOR TO MODIFY, TERMINATE, OR OFFSET THE POOL'S OBLIGATIONS OR THE POOL'S EXPOSURE TO THE RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH A TRANSACTION PRIOR TO ITS SCHEDULED TERMINATION DATE.

* * * * *

7.In § 4.34, add paragraph (b)(4) to read as follows:

§ 4.34 General disclosures required.

* * * * *

(b) * * *

(4) If the commodity trading advisor may engage in swaps, the Risk Disclosure Statement must further state:

SWAPS TRANSACTIONS, LIKE OTHER FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS, INVOLVE A VARIETY OF SIGNIFICANT RISKS. THE SPECIFIC RISKS PRESENTED BY A PARTICULAR SWAP TRANSACTION NECESSARILY DEPEND UPON THE TERMS OF THE TRANSACTION AND YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES. IN GENERAL, HOWEVER, ALL SWAPS TRANSACTIONS INVOLVE SOME COMBINATION OF MARKET RISK, CREDIT RISK, FUNDING RISK, AND OPERATIONAL RISK.

HIGHLY CUSTOMIZED SWAPS TRANSACTIONS IN PARTICULAR MAY INCREASE LIQUIDITY RISK, WHICH MAY RESULT IN YOUR ABILITY TO WITHDRAW YOUR FUNDS BEING LIMITED. HIGHLY LEVERAGED TRANSACTIONS MAY EXPERIENCE SUBSTANTIAL GAINS OR LOSSES IN VALUE AS A RESULT OF RELATIVELY SMALL CHANGES IN THE VALUE OR LEVEL OF AN UNDERLYING OR RELATED MARKET FACTOR.

IN EVALUATING THE RISKS AND CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS ASSOCIATED WITH A PARTICULAR SWAP TRANSACTION, IT IS IMPORTANT TO CONSIDER THAT A SWAP TRANSACTION MAY BE MODIFIED OR TERMINATED ONLY BY MUTUAL CONSENT OF THE ORIGINAL PARTIES AND SUBJECT TO AGREEMENT ON INDIVIDUALLY NEGOTIATED TERMS. THEREFORE, IT MAY NOT BE POSSIBLE TO MODIFY, TERMINATE, OR OFFSET YOUR OBLIGATIONS OR YOUR EXPOSURE TO THE RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH A TRANSACTION PRIOR TO ITS SCHEDULED TERMINATION DATE.

* * * * *

8.Effective July 2, 2012, revise § 4.27, as added November 16, 2011, at 76 FR 71114, and effective March 31, 2012 to read as follows:

§ 4.27 Additional reporting by advisors of certain large commodity pools.

(a) General definitions. For the purposes of this section:

(1) Commodity pool operator or CPO has the same meaning as commodity pool operator defined in section 1a(11) of the Commodity Exchange Act;

(2) Commodity trading advisor or CTA has the same meaning as defined in section 1a(12);

(3) Direct has the same meaning as defined in section 4.10(f);

(4) Net asset value or NAV has the same meaning as net asset value as defined in section 4.10(b);

(5) Pool has the same meaning as defined in section 1(a)(10) of the Commodity Exchange Act;

(6) Reporting period means the reporting period as defined in the forms promulgated hereunder;

(b) Persons required to report. A reporting person is:

(1) Any commodity pool operator that is registered or required to be registered under the Commodity Exchange Act and the Commission's regulations thereunder; or

(2) Any commodity trading advisor that is registered or required to be registered under the Commodity Exchange Act and the Commission's regulations thereunder.

(c) Reporting. (1) Except as provided in paragraph (c)(2) of this section, each reporting person shall file with the National Futures Association, a report with respect to the directed assets of each pool under the advisement of the commodity pool operator consistent with appendix A to this part or commodity trading advisor consistent with appendix C to this part.

(2) All financial information shall be reported in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles consistently applied.

(d) Investment advisers to private funds. Except as otherwise expressly provided in this section, CPOs and CTAs that are dually registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and are required to file Form PF pursuant to the rules promulgated under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, shall file Form PF with the Securities and Exchange Commission in lieu of filing such other reports with respect to private funds as may be required under this section. In addition, except as otherwise expressly provided in this section, CPOs and CTAs that are dually registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and are required to file Form PF pursuant to the rules promulgated under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, may file Form PF with the Securities and Exchange Commission in lieu of filing such other reports with respect to commodity pools that are not private funds as may be required under this section. Dually registered CPOs and CTAs that file Form PF with the Securities and Exchange Commission will be deemed to have filed Form PF with the Commission for purposes of any enforcement action regarding any false or misleading statement of a material fact in Form PF.

(e) Filing requirements. Each report required to be filed with the National Futures Association under this section shall:

(1)(i) Contain an oath and affirmation that, to the best of the knowledge and belief of the individual making the oath and affirmation, the information contained in the document is accurate and complete; Provided, however, That it shall be unlawful for the individual to make such oath or affirmation if the individual knows or should know that any of the information in the document is not accurate and complete and

(ii) Each oath or affirmation must be made by a representative duly authorized to bind the CPO or CTA.

(2) Be submitted consistent with the National Futures Association's electronic filing procedures.

(f) Termination of reporting requirement. All reporting persons shall continue to file such reports as are required under this section until the effective date of a Form 7W filed in accordance with the Commission's regulations.

(g) Public records. Reports filed pursuant to this section shall not be considered Public Records as defined in § 145.0 of this chapter.

end regulatory text

Editorial Note: Back to Top

FR DOC 2012-3390 appearing on pages 11252-11344 in the issue of Friday, February 24, 2012 is being partially republished due to numerous errors.

[FR Doc. C1-2012-3390 Filed 3-23-12; 8:45 a.m.]

BILLING CODE 1505-01-D

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