OCC: Moving from a Utility to an Influencer

Craig S. Donohue
July 26, 2016
By Craig S. Donohue ,Chairman

I am very pleased by the fact that OCC was named Clearinghouse of the Year by Global Investor/ISF Magazine in June. This is a tremendous recognition of the dedication and hard work put forth each day by my OCC colleagues on behalf of market participants. They truly deserve this award!

Thanks to them, OCC is evolving from a utility that processes trades for market participants to a market influencer that manages risk for the listed options industry and has taken on more of a leadership advocacy role for the industry with international and domestic policymakers.

We enhanced OCC's resiliency by closing the regulatory remediation gap and putting in place proactive policies and procedures to identify and resolve new problems. We strengthened OCC's capital base with the development and execution of a strategic capital plan that put OCC on solid financial footing. We also revitalized our governance and management structure by bringing in new public directors and strengthened our team by promoting smartly from within as well as bringing in new talent with fresh ideas that are resonating well in the marketplace.

As a Systemically Important Financial Market Utility (SIFMU), we at OCC advocate on behalf of the industry to provide exchanges and clearing firms with a strong competitive marketplace. We work hard to stay ahead of the evolving expectations of international and domestic regulators as well as international standards imposed by rating agencies. That is why we will continue to work with the European Commission, the European Securities and Markets Authority, and the SEC as they seek a common approach for the regulation of cross-border qualified central counterparties.

OCC is stronger today as a result of the improvements that regulators have made to the framework for central counterparties (CCPs) such as OCC. These enhancements continue to bolster OCC's leadership role in fostering market confidence and reducing systemic risk while maintaining our position as an independent risk manager.

Our stewardship role in the U.S. listed options industry requires that we promote resiliency in everything we do and in the markets we serve. The successful implementation of our capital plan allows OCC to meet that responsibility by significantly strengthening our financial resources.

Final approval of the capital plan by the SEC confirmed that strengthening OCC's capitalization is a compelling public interest. We believe the capital plan is a vital component to our goal of providing world-class service to market participants and ensuring the resilience of an important market utility.

Enhanced capital requirements continue to create incentives for market participants to seek greater capital efficiencies by working more closely with CCPs like OCC. To support this we are working to extend our capabilities in securities finance where we guarantee return of stock or cash to market participants. This innovative solution maintains liquidity resources during times of market stress.

As the industry continues to face strong economic and regulatory headwinds, OCC's collective dedication to these efforts will be critical to promoting continued growth of the U.S. listed options industry.

Your acceptance of all cookies will permit robust site functionality. If you don't allow cookies, some features and functionality of OCC's site may not operate as expected. If you do not choose either cookie setting for our site, or if you close this window, this message will continue to display on each page you visit. Cookie settings can be controlled in your Internet browser to automatically reject some forms of cookies. For more details on cookies this site uses, see our OCC Site Cookies page. In addition to using cookies, we retain other information, including your Internet Protocol (IP) address, for the purposes listed in the Privacy Policy. Do not accept analytic cookies Accept analytic cookies