Michael R. Bloomberg to Chair The Working Group on U.S. RMB Trading and Clearing

November 30, 2015

Mary Schapiro to Serve As Vice-Chair; Thomas Donohue, Timothy Geithner and Henry Paulson to Co-Chair

Group Will Seek to Establish Trading and Clearing of RMB in the United States to Improve U.S. Competitiveness

NEW YORK — A group of senior leaders in finance and U.S. industry today announced the formation of The Working Group on U.S. RMB Trading and Clearing, which will seek to establish the trading and clearing of the Chinese currency renminbi (RMB) in the United States. Michael R. Bloomberg will serve as the Chair of the Working Group. Mary Schapiro will serve as Vice-Chair, and Thomas J. Donohue, Timothy Geithner and Henry Paulson will Co-Chair.

As part of their bilateral summit at the White House on September 25, President Obama and President Xi agreed to further strengthen the financial cooperation between the two nations, including discussing mechanisms “to facilitate renminbi trading and clearing in the United States.” The formation of The Working Group on U.S. RMB Trading and Clearing follows that agreement, with the objective of charting a framework and roadmap that will make it easier for U.S institutions to make or receive RMB payments, subject to review by U.S. authorities, thereby lowering their transactional costs, increasing their efficiency and helping them build stronger trade and business partnerships — which in turn will create more jobs and lead to further U.S. economic growth.

“President Obama and President Xi came to an important agreement that will greatly benefit both the United States and China, and it’s now incumbent on U.S. industry to follow their lead,” said Mr. Bloomberg. “In particular, advancing a mechanism to trade the Chinese currency in the United States will improve the competitiveness of U.S. companies, while furthering America’s financial sector and economy. I’m very pleased to lead this new group and help move this along.”

Enabling RMB-denominated transactions to be cleared in the United States will improve the competitiveness of U.S. companies, increase market transparency and accrue direct benefits to the U.S. economy including:

  • Lower direct and indirect transaction costs and increased efficiencies for U.S. corporations and other financial market participants.
  • Giving U.S. corporations greater control of their RMB hedging by enabling them to transact with their existing U.S. relationship banks.
  • Allowing U.S. financial institutions to deliver services currently offered by overseas firms, including RMB-denominated debt and investment products.

The Working Group on U.S. RMB Trading and Clearing will undertake a series of actions, including:

  • Involving a diverse group of representatives from U.S. industry and the financial community.
  • Reviewing different operating models, including characteristics of RMB hubs in other countries.
  • Considering types of RMB products and services that could be most useful for U.S. markets.
  • Educating the U.S. marketplace on the benefits and mechanics of RMB trading.
  • Recommending new RMB trading and clearing capabilities for the U.S. consistent with existing market practices and regulatory requirements.
  • Providing periodic public reports on progress made by The Working Group.

In addition to the aforementioned leadership, The Working Group on U.S. RMB Trading and Clearing will initially include the following member institutions:

  • The U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Bank of America
  • BNY Mellon
  • Citi
  • Goldman Sachs
  • JP Morgan Chase
  • Morgan Stanley
  • Wells Fargo
  • Agricultural Bank of China
  • Bank of China
  • Bank of Communications
  • China Construction Bank
  • Industrial and Commercial Bank of China
  • CLS Bank International*
  • CME*
  • HSBC*
  • Standard Chartered*
  • State Street*
  • The Clearing House*

*Joined the working group after the the initial release was issued.

Additional firms are expected to join the group in the near future.

“This is a unique opportunity to foster closer ties between the United States and China, which is critical for a healthy global economy,” said Mr. Donohue, president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “Creating a Chinese currency trading mechanism in the U.S. makes it easier for American businesses to sell goods in China and will help the Yuan evolve into a free floating currency.”

“An enhanced RMB market in the U.S. will allow for a more efficient means for converting U.S. dollars to RMB, which helps American companies save on transaction costs and facilitate further trade with China,” said Mr. Paulson. “In turn, these benefits will make American exports more attractive for Chinese consumers and companies that prefer to pay in the local currency, boosting American manufacturing and competitiveness.”

Mr. Tian Guoli, Bank of China’s Chairman of the Board of Directors said, “We are pleased to join the working group as an initial member, and work with business leaders from China and the U.S. to advance a mechanism to trade and clear renminbi in the U.S. Against the backdrop of enhanced bilateral ties, Bank of China hopes to play a more active role in promoting renminbi in the U.S., and bridge financial and trade exchange for mutual benefits and development.”

SOURCE: The Working Group on U.S. RMB Trading and Clearing