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SEC Proposes Rule Regarding Private Fund Systemic Risk Reporting

Written by Michael Wu

On January 26, 2011, the SEC proposed a rule that would require SEC-registered advisers to hedge funds, private equity funds and other private funds to report information to the Financial Stability Oversight Council (“FSOC”) that would enable it to monitor risk to the U.S. financial system.  The information would be reported to the FSOC on Form PF and the information reported on Form PF would be confidential.

The proposed rule would subject large advisers to hedge funds, “liquidity funds” (i.e., unregistered money market funds) and private equity funds to heightened reporting requirements.  Under the proposed rule, a large adviser is an adviser with $1 billion or more in hedge fund, liquidity fund or private equity fund assets under management.  All other advisers would be regarded as smaller advisers.  The SEC anticipates that most advisers will be smaller advisers, but that the large advisers represent a significant portion of private fund assets.

Smaller advisers would be required to file Form PF once a year and would report only basic information about their hedge funds, private equity funds and/or other private funds, such as information regarding leverage, credit providers, investor concentration, fund performance, fund strategy, counterparty credit risk and the use of trading and clearing mechanisms.

Large advisers would be required to file Form PF quarterly and would provide more detailed information than smaller advisers.  The information reported would depend on the type of private fund that the large adviser manages.

  • Large advisers to hedge funds would report, on an aggregated basis, information regarding exposures by asset class, geographical concentration and turnover.  If a hedge fund has a net asset value of at least $500 million, the adviser would report information regarding the fund’s investments, leverage, risk profile and liquidity.
  • Large advisers to liquidity funds would report the types of assets in their liquidity funds, information relevant to the risks of the funds, and the extent to which the liquidity funds comply with Rule 2a-7 of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended.
  • Large advisers to private equity funds would respond to questions regarding the extent of leverage incurred by their funds’ portfolio companies, the use of bridge financing and their funds’ investments in financial institutions.

The SEC’s public comment period on the proposed rule will last 60 days.