Foreign Registrants and Applicants FAQs

The following table shows when an individual/entity is required to be registered as an FCM, RFED, IB, CPO, or CTA based on the locations of the entity, its customers, and the exchanges on which contracts will be traded. Exemptions may, of course, apply.

Entity Location

Customer Location

Exchange Location

Registration Required

United States

United States

United States

Yes

United States

United States

Foreign Country

Yes

United States

Foreign Country

United States

Yes

United States

Foreign Country

Foreign Country

No

Foreign Country

United States

United States

Yes

Foreign Country

United States

Foreign Country

*

Foreign Country

Foreign Country

United States

No**

Foreign Country

Foreign Country

Foreign Country

No

 

*The firm must register unless it has received an exemption under CFTC Regulation 30.5 or 30.10. 

** For a foreign broker acting as an FCM, registration is not required only if it submits any commodity interest transactions executed on or subject to the rules of a designated contract market for clearing on an omnibus basis through a registered FCM.

Foreign entities applying for registration must meet the same filing requirements as domestic applicants. In addition, each foreign entity that files an electronic Form 7-R agrees to make its books and records available in the United States for inspection by NFA and the CFTC.

All foreign applicants must file their application materials in English. FCM and IB applicants required to file financial reports must prepare them in English using U.S. dollars and according to U.S. accounting standards.

A foreign entity that transacts business directly with U.S. customers solely in futures contracts and commodity options traded on foreign exchanges is exempt from registration if:

(a) it is an FCM subject to a comparable regulatory structure by a foreign regulator which has been granted an exemption by the CFTC, or it is an IB, CPO, or CTA without a U.S. office; and

(b) it has filed a request for exemptive relief and an agreement with NFA appointing an authorized U.S. agent for service of process for communications in connection with activities that would otherwise require registration. IBs, CPOs and CTAs request exemption relief by filing an Exempt Foreign Firm Form 7-R.