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"They have been very creative and solution-oriented," states a client. "They are highly commercial and have a very winning approach. They're very sharp, are excellent at identifying problems and offering solutions, and are very plugged-in and really understand the industry."

A source reports: "They give super practical advice which is never purely academic. For us as clients, that's extremely useful. We need the professional judgment and they regularly offer that."

Chambers USA 2020

Commodities and Derivatives Regulation and Enforcement

Latham offers clients comprehensive, in-depth global expertise on the full range of regulatory and enforcement matters involving commodities and derivatives across markets.

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Regulatory Insight

Our regulatory lawyers represent financial institutions, fintech ventures, energy companies, investment funds, sovereign funds, brokers, trading platforms, and corporate end-users across a wide range of markets on matters involving:

  • Bespoke and complex derivatives
  • Trading platforms and intermediaries
  • Indices and benchmarks
  • Trading, risk management, and hedging transactions across all markets, including interest rates, credit, FX, energy, metals, agriculture, and cryptocurrencies, as well as equity-linked financial products 

We regularly advise clients on implementation of and compliance with derivatives regulation under:

  • Title VII of the Dodd-Frank Act
  • Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC regulations
  • Securities Exchange Act and securities regulations
  • National Futures Association and exchange rules
  • Prudential regulations
  • EMIR and other international legal regimes in the UK, EU, and Asia 

We also actively advocate for clients helping to shape the evolving regulatory landscape, assisting market participants, trade associations, and other interested parties in submitting comment letters, requesting no-action relief, and seeking interpretive guidance from relevant agencies. 

Enforcement & Litigation Prowess

Latham’s enforcement lawyers have been involved in many of the most significant government investigations and litigation relating to the commodities sector in the past decade. Our global team includes former supervisors from the CFTC Division of Enforcement, the Securities & Commodities Fraud Unit of the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, the SEC Division of Enforcement, and the UK Serious Fraud Office, as well as two former heads of the Criminal Division of the US Department of Justice and other former prosecutors and government officials with deep experience in financial matters. Our industry insight allows us to assist clients in their most complex and significant investigations and disputes. 

We represent clients in government and internal investigations and litigation relating to all aspects of commodities and derivatives, including a full range of regulatory issues and alleged conduct, such as:

  • Market manipulation
  • Spoofing and disruptive trading
  • Insider trading and misappropriation of confidential information
  • Wash trading
  • AML and Bank Secrecy Act compliance
  • Reporting disclosure issues
  • Registration and regulatory obligations of swap dealers, futures commission merchants, introducing brokers, swap execution facilities, futures exchanges, commodity pool operators, and commodity trading advisors 

Our enforcement work often involves complex trading and financial instruments, on which our market insight allows us to work closely with traders and other finance professionals and to engage effectively with government attorneys. Our integrated global team represents clients in both civil and criminal enforcement matters and investigations spanning multiple jurisdictions and regulatory authorities around the world. 

Focus on Fintech

In tandem with our Fintech Industry Group, we advise on complex and novel regulatory issues involving digital assets and distributed ledger technology (DLT), guiding fintech clients through a rapidly changing regulatory landscape. We assist with numerous aspects of the evolving financial industry, including structuring derivatives based on cryptocurrencies and DLT-based clearing and settlement systems for various asset classes. Our practice group leaders are frequent speakers on industry trends, including cryptocurrencies, artificial intelligence, and other areas of innovation.

Notice: We appreciate your interest in Latham & Watkins. If your inquiry relates to a legal matter and you are not already a current client of the firm, please do not transmit any confidential information to us. Before taking on a representation, we must determine whether we are in a position to assist you and agree on the terms and conditions of engagement with you. Until we have completed such steps, we will not be deemed to have a lawyer-client relationship with you, and will have no duty to keep confidential the information we receive from you. Thank you for your understanding.