FINRA has recently submitted a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) to propose another delay to the implementation of TBA margin requirements under Rule 4210. The new implementation date would be March 25, 2021.

FINRA has requested that the deferred implementation date becomes effective immediately upon filing of the rule change by FINRA with the SEC.  
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FINRA has made it official.  Earlier today, FINRA published Regulatory Notice 19-05, delaying TBA margin requirements until March 25, 2020.  FINRA explained:

FINRA is issuing this Notice to announce that FINRA is extending by an additional year, until March 25, 2020, the effective date of the margin requirements that otherwise would have become effective

On January 29th, FINRA released the following statement:

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (“FINRA”) is filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC” or “Commission”) a proposed rule change to extend, to March 25, 2020, the implementation date of the amendments to FINRA Rule 4210 (Margin Requirements) pursuant to SR-FINRA-2015-036, other than the amendments pursuant to SR-FINRA-2015-036 that were implemented on December 15, 2016. 

FINRA has indicated that it will file the proposed rule change with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) with a request for “immediate effectiveness,” which means that FINRA is recommending to the SEC that the deferred implementation date will become effective  immediately upon filing of the rule change by FINRA with the SEC.  
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On September 19, 2017, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) published a proposed rule change (available here) to delay implementation of certain margin requirements in respect of what are referred to as “Covered Agency Transactions,” including To Be Announced (“TBA”) transactions and other specified delayed delivery transactions involving mortgage-backed securities.

The delay will move the implementation date of the margin requirements from December 15, 2017 until June 25, 2018.  
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On January 14, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) solicited comments on a proposal by Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (“FINRA”) to revise its proposed changes to FINRA Rule 4210.   If implemented, FINRA’s proposal will result in the margining of certain trades in the To Be Announced (“TBA”) market.  This posting will provide a summary of FINRA’s proposed amendments, which relate to:

1) the types of transactions that will be subject to the new margin requirements; and

2) the implementation schedule for the margin proposal.

This posting will give specific consideration to the issue of how these proposed amendments could affect buy side firms.

Comments on the partial amendments are due to the SEC by February 11, 2016 with any rebuttal comments subsequently due on March 7, 2016.
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The short answer is it is not clear, but we do not expect the new margin rules to apply to trades any earlier than June 2016 or later than January 2018, assuming that the proposed rules are approved by the SEC.  Although, we recommend that market participants consider dealing with any open negotiations of Master Securities Forward Transaction Agreements (MSFTAs) and re-papering of existing MSFTAs well in advance of the actual implementation date.

The remainder of this posting will deal with the mechanics and procedures behind the determination of these dates and provide our readers with additional information in respect of our recommendation to “dust off” their MSFTA files sooner rather than later.
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