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On July 22, 2021, Representative Brad Sherman introduced H.R. 4616, the “Adjustable Interest Rate (LIBOR) Act of 2021” (the “Bill”) into the U.S. House of Representatives.  The Act is before the House’s Committee on Financial Services, Committee on Ways and Means, and Committee on Education and Labor.  On July 29, 2021, the House’s Committee on Financial Services voted to advance the Bill, along with certain technical amendments proposed by Representative Sherman.  The version of the Bill approved by the Committee on Financial Services can be accessed here:  Adjustable Interest Rate (LIBOR) Act of 2021 (Committee on Financial Services Version).  The Committee on Ways and Means, and Committee on Education and Labor have yet to act on the Bill.

Continue Reading Federal LIBOR “Tough Legacy” Fix Gains Traction

The last few months have seen the pace of change accelerate in the business loan market’s transition away from LIBOR. Several alternatives to the replacement benchmark rate recommended by the Alternative Reference Rates Committee (ARRC), the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR), gained momentum in the business loan market in the first part of 2021, and the ARRC and some regulators responded with efforts to highlight why SOFR should be the benchmark of choice. Set forth below are some of the milestones from an already eventful year, as well as some open questions to be worked through in the second half of 2021.

Continue Reading Mid-Year Check In on LIBOR Transition Developments

On Monday, November 30, 2020, ICE Benchmark Administration (“IBA”), as administrator of LIBOR, announced that it will consult in early December 2020 on its plan to cease publication of the overnight and one-, three-, six- and 12-month U.S. Dollar LIBOR (“USD LIBOR”) settings immediately following the LIBOR publication on June 30, 2023.[1] This announcement represents an effective extension of the end date for USD LIBOR, which previously was expected to cease following 2021.

Continue Reading ICE Benchmark Administration Proposes Extension of Most U.S. Dollar LIBOR Tenors Through June 2023; Move is Supported by the UK Financial Conduct Authority

It’s been a busy summer in the land of LIBOR transition preparation. As part of the ARRC’s ongoing efforts to prepare the cash product markets for the transition to SOFR and away from LIBOR as a benchmark interest rate, it posted ten separate releases between Memorial Day and August 7, 2020, in addition to hosting six “SOFR Summer Series” panel discussions on various SOFR topics (which were recorded and can be accessed here). This blogpost focuses on aspects of the ARRC’s releases relating to business loans.

Read on for more details, but here are a few major takeaways: (1) don’t expect any COVID related delays in the LIBOR sunset schedule – work on implementing hardwired LIBOR fallback language this fall and plan stop using LIBOR by mid-2021; (2) the ARRC now recommends simple SOFR in arrears as the best available fallback rate alternative for most business loans (at least until a term SOFR in advance market develops); and (3) feedback from the business loan market reflects a preference for following ISDA’s lead on LIBOR to SOFR transition issues whenever practicable to facilitate consistency between swaps and business loans (e.g., spread adjustments and certain conventions).

Continue Reading LIBOR Transition: Business Loans SOFR Summer Wrap Up

On April 17, the ARRC released a set of key objectives for 2020 that the ARRC has set for itself to support the voluntary use of SOFR as an alternative to USD LIBOR. The ARRC stated that its objectives were developed keeping in mind the current expectation that LIBOR can no longer be guaranteed beyond the end of 2021, noting that this timeline was recently reinforced by the UK FCA in a statement released in the context of dislocations surrounding the coronavirus.

Continue Reading ARRC Announces Key Objectives for 2020

On April 17, the ARRC released a webinar providing an in-depth overview of the ARRC’s  proposed New York State legislation.

As previously noted on this blog, the ARRC has indicated that the proposed legislation is intended to minimize legal uncertainty and adverse economic impacts associated with LIBOR transition and would: (i) prohibit a contract party

On April 8, the ARRC announced that it had agreed on a recommended spread adjustment methodology for cash products referencing USD LIBOR.

The ARRC’s recommended methodology is intended for use in for USD LIBOR contracts that have incorporated the ARRC’s recommended hardwired fallback language or for legacy USD LIBOR contracts where a spread-adjusted SOFR can

On March 6, 2020, the ARRC released a proposal for New York State Legislation, which the ARRC states is intended to minimize legal uncertainty and adverse economic impacts associated with LIBOR transition.

According to the ARRC, the proposed legislation would: (i) prohibit a contract party from refusing to perform its contractual obligations or declaring a

On March 2, 2020, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (the “New York Fed”), as administrator of SOFR, began publishing 30-, 90-, and 180-day SOFR Averages as well as a SOFR Index.

The SOFR Averages for a given publication date incorporate all the SOFR values starting exactly 30-, 90-, and 180-calendar days before the publication date, regardless of whether or not that date is a weekend or holiday, and extend through the SOFR published that day.

Continue Reading Federal Reserve Bank of New York Announces Publication of SOFR Averages and Index