LIBOR Transition FAQs

 

Background 

 

Since 2014 the UK authorities and market participants have been working jointly through the Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates (“RFR’s”) to pursue the use of more robust interest rate benchmarks by laying the groundwork for a successful market-led transition away from GBP LIBOR. The FCA and contributor banks have worked to secure voluntary panel bank support to sustain LIBOR until the end of 2021.

 

Why is this necessary?

 

Regulators are concerned about the continued use of LIBOR. Regulatory measures implemented after the financial crisis of 2008 have strengthened the balance sheets of banks, however in doing so, reduced the utility of unsecured interbank borrowing, which LIBOR submissions are based on. This means that the underlying market that LIBOR measures is not used for a significant volume of trades and therefore LIBOR submissions are often based on expert judgement as opposed to actual transactions. The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has determined that this method through which LIBOR is calculated does not comply with internationally accepted principles for robust interest rate benchmarks and it is to stop requiring banks to submit the rates for LIBOR calculation after 31December 2021.

 

Which rates are changing?

 

Currency

Existing Rate

Alternative Rate

GBP

LIBOR

SONIA, Sterling overnight index average

EUR

LIBOR, EURIBOR

€STR, Euro short term rate

USD

LIBOR

SOFR, Secured overnight financing rate

CHF

LIBOR

SARON, Swiss average rate overnight

JPY

LIBOR

TONA, Tokyo overnight average

 

What could these reforms mean for customers?

 

These changes could impact our products. The discontinuation of any LIBOR which is referenced in a loan facility and its replacement by an alternative benchmark may result in changes to the amount payable under the facility. Existing loan facility agreements may also have to be amended. Alpha Bank London Limited is working to keep customers informed throughout this transition and we will contact customers in due course with details on our proposed approach for the use of alternative benchmark interest rates.  

 

What if I have further questions? 

 

Please contact the General Manager, Joe Neophitou on 0207 332 9228.