Timothy Massad Nominated for CFTC Chairman

U.S. Treasury Department official Timothy Massad has been nominated by President Obama to serve as the Chairman of the CFTC. If confirmed by the Senate, Massad will succeed Gary Gensler, who plans to step down at the end of his term in January.

Chairman Gensler released a statement (linked below) regarding the nomination in which he congratulates Mr. Massad and states that he looks forward to their working together to ensure a smooth transition. SIFMA also released a statement (linked below) of congratulations, saying that Mr. Massad “has an impressive background in law and public service at the U.S. Treasury,” and that the CFTC would benefit if he were appointed.

Lofchie Comment:  As this linked article from Hester Peirce observes, the new Chairman will face a raft of challenges given the emerging state of the regulatory regime. Since the publication of the article, the difficulties have multiplied. A few matters to contend with: the new position limits proposal is vulnerable to challenge given the CFTC’s limited cost-benefit analysis; whether to allow significant volumes of trading in interest rate swaps, currencies and CDS to be forced onto SEFs that have not been subject to any meaningful regulatory oversight and whose rules are still a moving target, with the risk that trading activity will be materially disrupted; the application of the CFTC’s rules to non-U.S. swap dealers; and the EU appears readying itself to respond in kind if the CFTC acts in a manner that disadvantages EU swap dealers.

See: Transcript of President Obama’s Nomination of Massad.
See also: Chairman Gensler’s Statement; SIFMA Statement; MFA Blog News Release.
See also:  Excerpt from Henry IV: “Uneasy Lies the Head”.