The United States has now overtaken China with the most coronavirus (Covid-19) cases in the world. As the pandemic continues to spread in the US and federal, state and local governments grapple with the best response, federal regulatory authorities have sought to grant leniency.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Commodity Futures and Trading Commission (CFTC) and the National Futures Association have provided relief in the form of either temporary conditional guidance or no-action relief for their registrants. In most cases, the relief extends the deadlines for various upcoming filings for investment advisers and commodity pool operators. The NFA’s relief specifically relates to the application of the NFA’s branch office requirements to associated persons who are temporarily working remotely in response to the coronavirus.
It’s important to note both the SEC and CFTC’s relief is heavily conditioned and, in the case of the SEC, there are notification requirements in order to take advantage of the relief granted. For example, the SEC’s Form ADV relief is limited to filing obligations for which the original due date is on or after the date of this Order but on or prior to June 30, 2020 only. It also requires you to notify the SEC and post relevant information on your website.
SEC relief on filing deadlines under Covid-19
The SEC has provided relief for the following filing deadlines:
Filing of Form ADV under Rule 204A-1 for Registered Investment Advisers. Registered investment advisers are exempt from the requirements:
- under Rule 204-1 of the Advisers Act to file an amendment to Form ADV
- under Rule 204-3(b)(2) and (b)(4) related to the delivery of Form ADV Part 2 (or a summary of material changes) to existing clients “as long as the stated conditions are met”.
Filing of Form ADV under Rule 204-4 for Exempt Reporting Advisers. Exempt reporting advisers are exempt from the requirements under Rule 204-4 under the Advisers Act to file reports on Form ADV, “where the conditions are satisfied”.
Filing of Form PF under Rule 204(b)-1. Registered investment advisers that are required by Section 204(b) of and Rule 204(b)-1 under the Advisers Act to file Form PF are exempt from those requirements, “where the conditions are satisfied”.
CFTC relief on filing deadlines under Covid-19
The CFTC has provided relief for the following filing deadlines:
Filing of Form CPO-PQR under CFTC regulation 4.27. Any requirement that a small or mid-sized CPO file an annual report on Form CPO-PQR pursuant to CFTC regulation 4.27, provided that such filing is made by 15 May 2020; or any requirement that a large CPO file a quarterly report on Form CPO-PQR for Q1 2020 pursuant to CFTC Regulation 4.27, provided that such filing is made by 15 July 2020.
Pool Annual Reports under CFTC Regulations 4.7(b)(3) and 22(c). Any requirement that a CPO with a pool annual report due on or before 30 April 2020 file such report pursuant to CFTC regulations 4.7(b)(3) or 4.22(c), provided that the annual certified financial statements for its operated commodity pools are filed with the National Futures Association and distributed to pool participants no later than 45 days after the due date for such report. This relief does not foreclose a CPO from requesting an additional extension of time not to exceed a total of 180 days from the end of the pool’s fiscal year consistent with CFTC regulation 4.22(f).
Pool Periodic Account Statements under CFTC Regulations 4.7(b)(2) or 4.22(b). Any requirement that a CPO distribute periodic account statements to pool participants on either a monthly or quarterly basis under CFTC regulations 4.7(b)(2)or 4.22(b)(3) provided that such statements are distributed to participants within 45 days of the end of the reporting period for all reporting periods ending on or before 30 April 2020.
If you’d like more information on what this relief means for you or how to take advantage of the relief, please get in touch.