Can the boutique energy brokerage survive Dodd-Frank?

The Dodd-Frank Act is set to drastically reshape the over-the-counter energy derivatives brokerage industry in the US, as small firms in particular are threatened with the loss of their independence. Alexander Osipovich finds out how brokers are coping with the challenge

Boutique brokerages

For many years, US government oversight of over-the-counter derivatives was minimal, and there weren’t many barriers to launching a new brokerage specialising in OTC energy products. That led to an abundance of boutique brokerages, some of them tiny enterprises with just two or three brokers and quirky names such as ‘It’s All Good Energy Brokers’. Though estimates vary and there is no official tally, insiders estimate that there are around 50 oil options brokers and some 60 or 70 natural gas

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