Ice Clear Europe launches CDS clearing

Ice Clear Europe, the facility set up by Atlanta-based central counterparty (CCP) IntercontinentalExchange (Ice) for the clearing of European credit default swaps (CDS), has obtained regulatory approval and started clearing operations.

Ice Clear Europe underwent a regulatory review by the UK's Financial Services Authority (FSA), and has started clearing CDS contracts, just two days before the European Commission's July 31 deadline for CCPs to begin clearing CDSs.

The launch of Ice Clear Europe, which has started by clearing iTraxx contracts, follows the launch of its US CCP, Ice Trust, on March 9. The initial CDS clearing members of the CCP are Bank of America, Barclays, Citi, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley and UBS.

Meanwhile, another contender for European CDS clearing, an unnamed venture launched by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Chicago-based hedge fund Citadel Investment Group, remains in discussions with the UK FSA.

Frankfurt-based exchange Eurex will begin clearing European index and single-name CDS on July 30, the exchange said on July 24.

Ice Clear Europe has also appointed Suzanne Hubble as director of CDS development. Hubble will be responsible for the CCP's European CD clearing business. Before joining the CCP, Hubble spent 10 years at JP Morgan, where she was most recently responsible for electronic commerce and strategic initiatives for the European credit trading business.

See also: Race against the clock for European CDS CCPs
Eurex CDS clearing solution to start on July 30

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