The global financial crisis laid bare the potential for serious systemic risks in derivatives markets, especially the over-the-counter (OTC) market, where the notional value of outstanding contracts reached $583 trillion (Dh2,139.61 trillion) in June 2010.
According to the Bank for International Settlements, this was 15 per cent higher than at the onset of the crisis in 2007.
Practitioners are wary: in a survey conducted earlier this year, Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Institute's global membership of more than 95,000 professional investors identified the use and disclosure of derivatives as the top ethical issue facing capital markets worldwide.
With the exception of Nasdaq Dubai and Kuwait, all other GCC markets are long-only with no derivatives trading facilities. Regional stock markets are prone to high volatility, and the use of derivatives to manage risk and/or derive trading profits, should be better understood by market regulators and participants.
Following an earlier article in the Financial Times, Domluke Da Silva, CFA Emirates, Bob Dannhauser and Jim Allen of the CFA Institute, discuss the potential for reform of derivatives regulation, including the requirement for centralised clearing of derivatives trades.