CC drafts new rules for LIFFE

CLIFFORD CHANCE finance partner Tim Plews is drawing up the new rules for controversial screen-based trading at LIFFE, the London International Financial Futures & Options Exchange.

The move from open outcry to electronic trading, is likely to see dozens of City traders losing their jobs. But the move has been forced by competition from Frankfurt's electronic Deustche TerminBorse exchange.

Plews has also drafted the memorandum and articles of association for LIFFE's proposed new corporate structure which will allow outside investors, who do not trade, to own shares in LIFFE. Currently only traders on the exchange can be members and this has been criticised for not being a flexible enough structure to compete with other exchanges.

Plews, chairman of Clifford Chance's international financial markets group, said that Liffe's board had “agonised” over the decision.

He said that although the work he had to do, including drafting new computer contracts and service contracts, was relatively simple, “proposals have caused great dismay in certain parts of the City”.