UK Treasury Taskforce gears up for accelerated settlement exploration with new appointment

The taskforce will examine the case for quicker settlement times, with initial findings due to be published by December.

Tony Freeman, director of policy at non-profit industry body and catalyst for collaborative innovation within the capital markets, ISITC Europe CIC, has joined the recently launched UK Treasury Taskforce for accelerated settlements.

Launched on 9 December 2022, the Accelerated Settlement Taskforce looks to explore the potential for faster settlement of financial trades in the UK.

The case for trades to be settled more speedily, such as moving to a T+1 standard settlement period, will be examined by the group, with initial findings due to be published by December 2023, with a full report and recommendations made by December 2024.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in February 2022 proposed rule changes to accelerate the settlement cycle for US equities transactions to T+1, a move which could be implemented as soon as 31 March 2024 if the rule changes are adopted. Should the US shorten its settlement cycle, the move would have widespread implications for global markets, with Europe and the UK now considering whether they would follow suit.

The SWIFT Institute has commissioned an academic study into the global impact of the US and Canada moving to a T+1 cycle, the results of which are due to be published in a research paper in May this year. Freeman will work alongside Gary Wright, director at ISITC Europe CIC, in leading the business research aspect of the study.

ISITC Europe CIC states that it will collaborate across the capital market with stakeholders in the industry’s transaction settlement chain alongside a number of trade associations. Members will be provided with regular updates and information concerning the areas of businesses and operations impacted by accelerated settlements.

“It’s important to understand that ISITC Europe CIC is an entirely independent trade body with no vested interest’s providing understanding of T+1 produced from its experienced bank of knowledge,” said the group in a statement.

Alongisde Freeman’s appointment, Bill Meenaghan, chief executive of DLT database SSimple, has also joined the UK’s Accelerated Settlement Taskforce.