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Finance Insights

Welcome to the autumn 2020 edition of our newsletter for corporate treasurers, chief financial officers and corporate general counsel in which we highlight key topical issues in the financial markets and explore their implications from a corporate perspective.

In this edition, we continue our series on global interest rate reform, focussing on the ISDA Fallbacks Protocol. The transition away from LIBOR, and the need to address it in documentation, is becoming an ever more pressing issue, as we move closer to the end of 2021. Following the UK’s departure from the EU in January, we take a look over the Brexit cliff edge, when the transition period ends on 31 December. Covid-19 has affected commerce in a multitude of ways. Here, we focus on the UK Government’s loan support scheme for large businesses, and give consideration to the options potentially available to those corporates who are looking to refinance funding obtained under the Covid Corporate Financing Facility. As market participants continue to focus on ESG, we highlight some recent developments in the green and sustainable loan and bond markets – particularly following the publication of recent guidance in respect of these products. Lastly, many individuals have been working mainly or entirely from home over the last few months. We therefore set out some practical guidance for the execution of documents when working remotely.

We hope you find this edition helpful in considering the implications of these key developments in practice. Your usual contacts at Linklaters would be happy to discuss any questions you may have which arise out of this newsletter.

Key Finance Insights

LIBOR Transition: spotlight on the ISDA Fallbacks Protocol

The focus on transitioning away from LIBOR has intensified over recent months. Whilst some regulatory timelines have been relaxed as a result of Covid-19, global authorities have reiterated that firms should not rely on LIBOR being published after the end of 2021.

A glimpse over the Brexit cliff edge

The Brexit transition period will end on 31 December 2020. For financial services, this date marks a licencing cliff edge as EEA-UK passporting rights fall away and, broadly, each is to be treated as a third country by the other. Even if a free trade agreement is achieved, this is unlikely to be of practical significance for financial services.

Coronavirus support schemes - the UK Government's loan support scheme for large businesses

The global pandemic has seen the UK Government make available a number of schemes and regulatory relief measures in response to Covid-19.

Coronavirus support schemes - refinancing considerations for CCFF funding

Currently 65 corporates have outstanding commercial paper (CP) issued under the Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) launched by HM Treasury and the Bank of England in March 2020.

Green and sustainability linked loans - new guidance published

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues are becoming ever more ingrained in corporates’ culture. Reflecting this, ESG developments continue apace.

E-signing and virtual signings

Remote working arrangements have been widely implemented in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Set out in this article are some considerations for the ‘virtual’ execution of English law contracts and some of the practical solutions available.

Finance Insights - Autumn 2020

Explore our guide on key topical issues in the financial markets and their implications from a corporate perspective

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