Nasdaq OMX becomes first clearing house to bag European approval

Harriet Green
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Nasdaq OMX, the Stockholm-based multi-asset clearing house, has become the first in Europe to be authorised as compliant under new, tougher European regulations designed to increase oversight of derivatives markets.

The Swedish Financial Services Authority formally approved the business today. Clearing houses are having to reapply to operate under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) legislation.

EMIR, which is very similar to Dodd Frank in the US, came after the 2009 decision by G20 leaders to impose risk-mitigating and stability-enhancing mandates.

In exchange for complying, groups like Nasdaq OMX can offer customers increased efficiencies on the margin which investors have to place in order to trade derivatives.

Hans-Ole Jochumsen, executive vice president, of Nasdaq OMX’s Transaction Services Nordic, says:

Our clearing house was the first with true multi-asset derivatives clearing in Europe. Now, as the first to be EMIR authorised, we can focus on further developing our offering, including an expansion within interest rate swaps and German power derivatives, as well as introducing clearing of foreign exchange products.

The approval was made by a college of regulators and central banks from Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, and the UK, as well as the European Central Bank (ECB) and the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA).