At the 44th Annual International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) Conference in Sydney, Australia, the Chairmen of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) participated in a signing ceremony on May 15 for the IOSCO Enhanced Multilateral Memorandum of Understanding Concerning Consultation and Cooperation and the Exchange of Information (EMMoU).
IOSCO established its first enforcement Multilateral Memorandum of Understanding Concerning Consultation and Cooperation and the Exchange of Information in 2002 (2002 MMoU). The 2002 MMoU created a framework for international information-sharing among securities and derivatives regulators to facilitate cross-border enforcement investigations, and now is widely viewed as the international benchmark for cross-border cooperation in enforcement matters. The 2002 MMoU currently has 123 signatories that have agreed to comply with minimum standards for obtaining and sharing with fellow signatories banking, brokerage and beneficial ownership information. Both the SEC and the CFTC became signatories to the 2002 MMoU on December 19, 2002.
Since 2002, there have been significant changes in the complexity, sophistication and size of global financial markets, as well as in the technology used by market participants and regulators. These changes, along with the demonstrated success of the 2002 MMoU, led IOSCO to adopt the EMMoU. Signatories of the EMMoU agree to new forms of assistance critical to effective enforcement, such as obtaining compelled testimony and obtaining asset freezes to protect customer funds, among other powers.
“As investment products, services and markets evolve, it is critical that the international community of securities and derivatives regulators continue to cooperate to protect investors from bad actors perpetrating fraud across borders,” said SEC Chairman Jay Clayton. “The SEC took an active role in negotiating and drafting the EMMoU with the intent of building upon the tremendous success of the MMoU in facilitating international cooperation. This signing demonstrates the SEC’s continued strong commitment to combatting securities and derivatives fraud against American investors – including fraud which is carried out outside our borders.”
“The CFTC is proud to be part of the inaugural group of signatories to the EMMoU and to demonstrate its commitment to international enforcement cooperation,” said CFTC Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo. In today’s world of rapidly evolving technology and increasingly global financial markets, securities and derivatives violations frequently involve cross-border misconduct. As a result, effective enforcement requires that regulators around the world ensure that they are able to cooperate fully with their regulatory counterparts to ensure that investors are protected, markets are safeguarded and wrongdoers are held accountable.”