Businesses of all types and sizes throughout the United States, Mexico and beyond bring their disputes to Gardere's litigation team and receive practical, responsive, boutique-style attention in return. Our clients have access to the firepower and value of a well-known and highly-regarded Firm's capabilities and interdisciplinary strengths.
Gardere has a national and international energy practice formed around our Energy Industry Team, which is a multidisciplinary group of approximately 80 attorneys with diverse backgrounds, experience and skills specific to the energy industry. Our team includes attorneys who have served as in-house counsel for major energy companies, providing a depth of insight into our clients' needs, issues and concerns. We understand and regularly practice in virtually every sector of the energy, and we represent a wide variety of industry participants from multinational corporations to individuals.
From our offices in the United States and Mexico, our International Practice helps clients operate in today’s global economy. We have more than 30 professionals operating as a boutique within an Am Law 200 law firm and are able to provide focused service with the resources of a large firm. We understand that clients who are engaged in the global marketplace need lawyers who can operate seamlessly across multiple jurisdictions. Our international experts are multi-lingual, are culturally fluent and intimately familiar with various legal systems across the world, especially those in Latin America. Whether you need help with commercial transactions, regulatory matters, customs and import regulations, immigration matters, M&A and joint ventures, international disputes, or international tax planning, Gardere’s international team is here to assist you.
We represent domestic and foreign private funds in all aspects of fund formation, fund operations, platform and add-on acquisitions, and portfolio company operations. Our team has a reputation for being the go-to-lawyers for private equity funds, hedge funds, venture capital funds and family offices. We are known for our vast deal experience, the efficient way we staff and manage our work, and the way we maintain our relationships. We get deals done with sophisticated, strategic, and practical advice tailored to the needs of our clients.
*Not admitted to practice law.
On October 12, 2011, the Securities and Exchange Commission joined the Federal Reserve Board, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in proposing for comment the so-called “Volcker
Rule” to implement Section 619 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. That section of the Dodd-Frank Act in effect requires regulated banking institutions to cease proprietary trading and certain investment activities. The proposed rule and its corresponding explanations and questions for comment are too extensive, complex, and detailed to be adequately described in a blog post or entry. But because the rule will likely be a topic of considerable comment and debate, it seems worthwhile to provide a very brief description of it.
The rule would restrict “covered banking entities” – which essentially are banks and other insured depository institutions, bank holding companies, and entities that are affiliated with them – from two types of activities:
Each of these restrictions is phrased as a prohibition, but with various exceptions or exemptions. Among the significant activities that would be exempted from the prohibition on proprietary trading are:
Also, this prohibition would not apply to trading activities by a covered banking activity on behalf of its customers, including where it is acting as a trustee or other fiduciary, an investment adviser, or a commodity trading advisor.
The rule would require a covered banking entity to maintain formal policies and programs to ensure and monitor compliance with the restrictions on proprietary trading and, depending on the level of exempted activities, to satisfy certain recordkeeping and reporting obligations.
Among the significant activities that would be excluded or exempted from the prohibition against sponsoring or investing in a private equity or hedge fund are:
These exceptions and exemptions would also apply to the prohibition against lending or having any other credit exposure (including by guarantee or derivatives transaction) to a private equity or hedge fund. But a covered banking entity would be permitted to engage in any such excepted or exempted activity only if the activity would not (1) involve a material conflict of interest with any of the covered banking entity’s customers or clients, (2) result in material exposure to “high-risk assets” or “high-risk trading strategies” (as defined in the rule), or (3) threaten the safety and soundness of the covered banking entity or the financial stability of the U.S.
The rule would require a covered banking entity to maintain formal policies and programs to ensure and monitor compliance with the restrictions on sponsoring and investing in private equity or hedge funds, and those compliance-program requirements would be enhanced depending on the level of the covered banking entity’s excepted or exempted activity.
OUR TAKE: The public reactions to the rule by consumer groups and by banking- and securities-industry organizations have varied widely. Not surprisingly, the former are concerned that the prohibitions are subject to exceptions or exemptions that are too broad, and the latter are concerned that the restrictions are too severe to permit banks to operate properly and profitably. The release also acknowledges the difficulty of formulating an appropriate rule and poses many questions about the scope and operation of the rule for comment. We expect that the comments, which are due January 13, 2012, will be varied and interesting and that formulating the final rule will be challenging.
The publications contained in this site do not constitute legal advice. Legal advice can only be given with knowledge of the client's specific facts. By putting these publications on our website we do not intend to create a lawyer-client relationship with the user. Materials may not reflect the most current legal developments, verdicts or settlements. This information should in no way be taken as an indication of future results.
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