WASHINGTON - The Public Securities Association is sponsoring an educational symposium on derivatives and structured financial products Monday, for congressional staff.
The symposium comes as the chairman and top Republican member of the House Banking Committee are working together to draft a derivatives bill that they hope will be enacted this year, In addition, the General Accounting Office is preparing to release - a report to lawmakers that highlights the shortcomings of federal agencies' oversight of the derivatives markets.
The symposium also follows complaints by R. Fenn Putman, the association's chairman, that the term "derivatives" is being used too loosely and should not be applied to collateralized, mortgage obligations and other structured financial products or instruments that do not involve contracts. Putman is a managing director at Lehman Brothers.
The association's brochure on the program clearly distinguishes between derivatives and structured financial products.
In its brochure, the association said the purpose of the symposium is to explain how derivatives and structured financial products are used in the municipal bond and mortgage backed securities markets.
One panel session will focus on how derivatives are used to manage risks by state and local governments and on how bank, securities firms, swap dealers, and other counterparties manage their risks in the market.
A second panel session will focus on how structured financial products are created in mortgage-backed and municipal markets, how they are used by portfolio managers, and what effects they have on borrowing costs.
The symposium will conclude with a luncheon discussion of the legislative and regulatory outlook for derivatives and structured financial products.