Money Market Funds Reforms in the US and the EU

Dr Mohammed Alshaleel, Lecturer in Law at the University of Essex, published an article titled ‘Money Market Funds Reforms in the US and the EU: The Quest for Financial Stability’.

The article considers the impact of money market funds (MMFs) reforms in the US and the EU on the money market fund industry and global financial stability. The 2008 financial crisis proved that MMFs are a source of considerable instability to the global financial system, and highlighted their susceptibility to runs. The shareholders’ incentive to redeem their shares before others do when there is a perception that the MMFs might suffer a loss makes MMFs vulnerable to runs. Given this reality, the article argues that the emphasis of the financial regulators on achieving the stability of the entire financial system after the 2008 financial crisis necessitates the strictness of the new reforms.

Divided into six parts, the article outlines the attributes and classification of MMFs, the definition of financial stability, and the run and systemic risk posed by MMFs during the financial crisis, before assessing the MMFs’ reforms in the US and the EU and the impacts of these reforms on the MMFs industry and global financial stability system. The major component of the US reform is the introduction of the floating net asset value (FNAV), where an MMF’s share price will fluctuate to reflect the daily market value of the fund assets. In the EU the new regulation provides investors with a high degree of optionality for investing by introducing Low Volatility Net Asset Value (LVNAV) MMFs.

The article concludes that despite that, the reforms are likely to jeopardise the viability of some categories of MMFs, they enhance global financial stability, and the complexity of the reforms has made MMFs more appropriate products to financial institutions’ investors than retail investors.

The article is published in Volume 31, Issue 2, pp. 303-335 of the European Business Law Review and can be accessed here.

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