More Margin Fun: LCH Clearnet Raises Margins On Irish Bonds, May Proceed With Comparable Hike For Other Products

Tyler Durden's picture

It appears commodities are not the only items that are susceptible to margin increases: the other casualty, bonds, especially those of insolvent European countries. LCH Clearnet has just hiked the margin requirement for Irish government bonds by 15% of net exposure, leading to additional selling of long positions, and resulting in the rout in spreads currently seen in Irish bonds. As Bloomberg reports, citing Simon Penn from UBS, “this is LCH recognizing that the markets are quite
serious about the potential for Ireland to default or
restructure.” And as the LCH acknowledges, “if we judge that it is appropriate to apply the risk
framework we have for Ireland elsewhere then we will do so,” John Burke, head of fixed income at LCH, said by phone today.
“Having taken the step to invoke the risk framework for
Ireland, it is a significant and appropriate move.” The market is now also pricing in an almost certain comparable hike in Portuguese bonds, judging by the price action there. The LCH action has the potential for wide-reaching implications, as the organization acts as a central counterparty for a whole slew of exchanges.

Among these are:

  • NYSE Liffe     
  • LCH EnClear - OTC Emissions    
  • LCH EnClear - OTC Freight    
  • LME    
  • EDX    
  • EquityClear    
  • Nodal Exchange    
  • RepoClear    
  • SwapClear    
  • LCH EnClear OTC Services: Emissions

From LCH Clearnet

Dear RepoClear Member,

1. In
accordance with the Sovereign Risk Framework issued on 5 October 2010,
LCH.Clearnet Ltd has revised the risk parameters for Irish government
bonds cleared through the RepoClear service.  The margin required for
positions of Irish government bonds will consequently be increased by
15% of net exposure. This will also apply to Irish government bond
exposures in the single 'A'  €GC basket. LCH.Clearnet will continue to
monitor the situation closely and keep the parameters under close

2. The additional margin will be charged on net exposure at close of business on Thursday 11 November 2010 and will be reflected in a margin call on Friday 12 November 2010.

3. Those
members affected by the changes will be contacted individually later
today and given an indication of the size of the margin call.  

4. Details of the Sovereign Risk Framework can be found on the LCH.Clearnet website ( under Risk Management > Ltd > Margin rate circulars > RepoClear.

5. Report
74 (available on the LCH.Clearnet Member Reporting website) will detail
any further changes in the margin levels charged under this framework.

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vs18's picture

Holy shit you're a machine

Comrade de Chaos's picture

I bet there will be ether a giant effort to place the EU dirt under the rug during the Thanksgiving weekend. That or huge degree of EU dirt will suddenly appear. I mean it started a year ago with Dubai, it's about time the sovereign crisis went full cycle and .. it's a wonderful time of the year....

Arius's picture


irish strippers excluded ?

all is well in lalahh land...government will take care of us...gia right!

kaiserhoff's picture

About damn time.  California, here they come!

Jones79's picture

i always wanted to know why i, as an american citizen, or anybody else here, can't trade foreign government cash bonds, as a non-institutional investor.  anybody?  awhile back i wanted to buy some australian gov't bonds and hedge the currency risk.  i guess this is the defintion of the carry trade.   

Arius's picture


why not simplify and buy gold?

Spartan's picture

The money seems to have been chased into Oil today...thats great news right? Another Oil price shock ($100+) should get inflation going according to the latest Fed theory.

hugolp's picture

The british government is already preparing for high oil prices. Stagflation is coming.

TooBearish's picture

EC gonna rally now bitchez

DonutBoy's picture

Now a bunch of Euro-weenies are going to huff & puff and declare these private clearing houses are capitalist thieves and demand the creation of an EU-run clearing house to work alongside the new EU-run rating agency.


DavidRicardo's picture

Like, this is news?  Raising margins is textbook Mellonesque liquidation.  It is government being removed from society by the powerful.