Swap Regulator’s Ritter Joins Chilton at DLA Piper Firm

Elizabeth Ritter, a 25-year veteran of the main U.S. derivatives regulator, has joined the DLA Piper law firm as it expands its practice to respond to new rules for the $700 trillion swaps market.

Ritter follows to the firm her former boss Bart Chilton, who was a commissioner at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission as it increased oversight of swaps through rules required by the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act. The regulations are designed to reduce risks and increase transparency in swaps traded by firms including JPMorgan Chase & Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Deutsche Bank AG.

“I’m very much looking forward to helping advance cross-border financial market regulatory issues globally,” said Ritter, who was a lawyer on Chilton’s staff. “I consider this to be a continuation of the public service I’ve done for the past quarter-century, just from a different forum.”

Ritter, who will be a partner in the firm’s Washington office, is the latest senior employee of the CFTC to leave as the agency transitions from writing to enforcing the rules drafted in response to the 2008 credit crisis. Scott O’Malia, a Republican commissioner, will become chief executive of the International Swaps and Derivatives Association this month, while Stephen Obie, a top enforcement lawyer at the agency, joined the Jones Day law firm in March.

The agency has warned that it lacks the necessary budget to have enough employees and technology to adequately oversee markets.

“We rely heavily on the industry to regulate itself,” Timothy Massad, the agency’s chairman, said at a July 31 event held by Politico. “We don’t have enough people to simply oversee many of the participants in this industry.”

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