Responsabiliser la faillite financière

CAMBRIDGE – Quatre parmi les plus importants organismes de réglementation financière du monde - la Banque d'Angleterre, l'Autorité fédérale de surveillance du secteur financier (BaFin) en Allemagne, la Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation aux Etats-Unis et l'Autorité suisse de surveillance de marché financier - ont récemment demandé au marché mondial des produits dérivés de changer la manière de faire des affaires. Il s'agit à présent de savoir si les organismes de réglementation peuvent faire que cela se réalise, ou si leur influence a plus de poids encore. Ce ne sera pas facile.

La lettre rédigée en termes laconiques par les organismes de réglementation à l'attention de l'International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) a demandé de renoncer à un élément essentiel dans l'effort de plusieurs décennies de l'industrie pour se soustraire à la faillite de ses débiteurs financiers - une exemption qui met à mal non seulement la stabilité du débiteur, mais l'économie mondiale tout entière. De nombreux observateurs estiment que ces exemptions ont frappé très durement le système financier mondial, en particulier lors de la faillite de Lehman Brothers en 2008.

Les organismes de régulation se concentrent sur un aspect important des contrats de produits dérivés permettant à l'industrie des produits dérivés d'interrompre brusquement ses relations avec une entité en difficulté financière, ce qui laisse une institution démunie de tous les moyens d'amorcer sa reprise. Les autres créanciers ne peuvent en principe pas faire cela : par exemple dans une faillite aux États-Unis, ils doivent d'abord attendre qu'un tribunal décide si la société débitrice peut être restructurée. Ce n'est qu'ensuite qu'ils peuvent procéder au recouvrement de leurs dettes.

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