The State of New York has enacted a new law that should ease the transition away from US dollar LIBOR for legacy financial contracts that are governed by New York law but do not contain modern benchmark fallback provisions. A similar federal law is in the works, which if passed would apply nationwide.
LIBOR, which has been plagued by cases of bank manipulation, is set at different currencies, including the U.S. dollar, British pound sterling and euro. New LIBOR-based contracts will cease at the end of 2021, but in November, the Intercontinental Exchange Inc. announced that the ICE Benchmark Administration, which administers LIBOR, would explore ceasing the most utilized U.S. dollar LIBOR tenors in June 2023 instead of late 2021. On March 5, Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority confirmed the 2021 and 2023 cessation dates for LIBOR, although it retains the option for a synthetic calculation if needed.
The extension to June 2023 would allow more time for outstanding contracts to mature, thereby reducing the chance of potential disruptions, U.S. regulators said in a December statement.
But the majority of contracts extend beyond mid-2023.
Regulators kicked off the final countdown for the London interbank offered rate Friday, ordering banks to be ready for the end of a much maligned benchmark that’s been at the heart of the international financial system for decades.
The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority confirmed that the final fixings for most rates will take place at end of this year, with just a few key dollar tenors set to linger for a further 18 months.