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LIBOR Transition Resources

Smart In Your World
Everything you need to know to be prepared for the LIBOR-SOFR transition.

LIBOR Transition Overview

Interest Rate Benchmarks have been Changed 

  • It had been recommended that the US Dollar (USD) London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) be replaced by the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR) as a primary benchmark index. LIBOR is used as an index to calculate interest rates in over $200 trillion of financings.

    • However, SOFR is a recommended, not required, new benchmark with banks permitted to select their own new benchmarks.
    • Objective SOFR spreads are only recommended, not required, with banks permitted to select their own new interest rates at their sole discretion.
    • The impending transition is expected to disrupt worldwide financial markets. This is expected to pose significant challenges and risks to financial institutions and their borrower clients. 
    • This will impact any and all financial institutions and borrowers that have outstanding interest rate swaps and/or loans tied to LIBOR. It is likely that many of these companies are unaware of the proposed transition. Executing what these companies may be provided by their financial institutions, as ‘standard forms,’ will have significant financial and legal ramifications for years to come.
    • Financial institutions have been "fast-tracking" this documentation. Once this documentation is in place, it will be very difficult to change or revoke absent protracted litigation/arbitration.
    • While the effective date was previously set for December 31, 2021, it was announced that the transition period has been extended through June 2023, presumably due to both the lack of readiness and the complexity of the transition process.
    • It is imperative that clients who will be impacted begin to plan and prepare now, especially since financial institutions and US regulators seem intent that the transition begin immediately.
    • As a result of this immediate implementation, all need to prepare including, but not limited to:
      • Large and small banks
      • Large and small companies
      • Insurance companies
      • Real estate entities
      • Hospitals
      • Colleges and universities
      • Museums and performing arts centers
      • Other nonprofits and foundations
      • Government issuers and government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs)
      • Mutual, pension, private equity, and hedge funds
      • Consumer groups

LIBOR Related Webinars

Managing and Preparing for LIBOR Transition: Practical Guide

Partner Les Jacobowitz previously spoke with The Knowledge Group (TKG), offering a practical guide for companies and executives that will be impacted. Firms of all sizes should now start preparing for the transition’s impact to effectively guard their interests and address potential risk issues. Importantly, no new LIBOR-based instruments should be entered into though that has not been industry practice. It is of paramount importance that companies and their counsel keep up with the updates and developments in order to effectively protect their businesses and prevent risk issues including, but not limited to, significant financial repercussions in the transition and inevitable litigation.

Watch TKG February 2020 Presentation (Les' Begins at 28:58)

LIBOR Transition: Demystifying Trends, Developments, and Legal Issues Webinar

The concurrent LIBOR transition activities continue to be a major issue for global financial institutions and borrower clients. Recently, the Alternative Reference Rates Committee (ARRC) released (i) a consultation seeking comments intended as part of its fallback provision recommendations for cash products referencing LIBOR and (ii) an RFP for calculating the fallback spread. This, along with the other trends and developments that are anticipated to arise, continues to cloud the current legal climate. With the impending risks and pressures from regulatory agencies, financial entities and borrowers need to develop well-established preparation and compliance plans that will help them in this changing landscape.

Watch TKG September 2020 Presentation (Les' Begins at 38:03)

NYIC LIBOR Transition Webinar

As we approach the end of 2021, NYIC has assembled a panel to discuss important updates and market developments in connection with the end of LIBOR and the transition to new “risk-free rates” and “credit-sensitive rates”. The panelists will also discuss developments on SOFR, including Term SOFR, credit spread adjustments, and the impact of statements from financial regulators regarding no new LIBOR exposure after 2021.

Watch NYIC Webinar

'Zombie' LIBOR for USD Contracts: Navigating the Critical Issues

The scheduled phase-out of the LIBOR by the end of 2021 is currently posing significant transition challenges for banks and all concerned borrowers. Furthermore, ICE Benchmark Administration Limited (IBA) announced last December 2020 the extension of U.S. dollar (USD) LIBOR through June 2023, creating a change in the LIBOR transition process and opening more ambiguities in managing USD contracts.

With these and other critical issues incessantly emerging in the backdrop, it is necessary for financial institutions to keep themselves abreast of the latest developments and develop a strategic plan to ensure that risks and pitfalls are well-mitigated.  In this webinar,  “‘Zombie’ LIBOR for USD Contracts: Navigating the Critical Issues”, Les Jacobowitz and Paul Noring (Berkeley Research Group) provided the audience with an in-depth analysis of the critical issues surrounding LIBOR. Speakers also offered the best practices that are essentially needed in this evolving area of law.

Watch TKG May 2021 Webinar

LIBOR Transition Issues in 2022

In future webinars, Les is expected to address the following new developments:

  • Recent Federal and State Legislative  Developments
  • IRS Rules
  • Transition Documentation Concerns

LIBOR Client Alerts and Related Materials

USD LIBOR Class Action

Business Compliance/Corporate Citizenship

Commodities

Emergency Monetary/Fiscal Measures

Federal Law/New York Law

International Protocols/UK Laws

LIBOR Transition Implications

Securities Litigation

SOFR 

Tax Impact

Trustee Ramifications

US Securities Laws

Swaps