Guidance on Year 2000 contingency planning for financial market authorities

Press release  | 
25 February 1999

The Joint Year 2000 Council, together with its four parent committees, today released guidance for financial market authorities related to Year 2000 contingency planning. The document, Planning by Financial Market Authorities for Year 2000 Contingencies, discusses a range of contingency planning issues facing financial market authorities, including risk mitigation measures, public communication strategies, mechanisms for exchanging information and issues surrounding potential liquidity pressures. The paper includes specific contingency planning guidance relevant to each of the four main categories of financial market authority - banking supervisors, securities regulators, insurance supervisors and payment system overseers.

Roger W. Ferguson, Jr., Chairman of the Council, stated: "Comprehensive contingency planning that seeks to minimise disruption in the world's financial markets should be one of the priorities for all responsible financial market participants and authorities in the year ahead. A smooth transition to 2000 will require special attention to business continuity efforts as well as ongoing focus on remediation and testing."

Contingency planning in financial markets was the topic of another paper recently issued by the Council. This paper, Year 2000 Business Continuity Planning: Guidelines for Financial Institutions, is directed at private sector financial firms and provides specific guidance on the development and implementation of a firm's Year 2000 business continuity project. It stresses that the design of an effective continuity planning programme will require the close involvement of a firm's senior management.

Background: since its establishment in April 1998, the Joint Year 2000 Council has undertaken a number of initiatives aimed at raising awareness of the Year 2000 problem and prompting appropriate action within the financial sector's global regulatory community. The Council's activities have included the development of guidance on a number of policy issues such as testing and information sharing, the establishment of a global database of key Year 2000 contacts, the organisation of regional meetings and the distribution of a regular newsletter to financial market authorities worldwide. The Council is jointly sponsored by the Basle Committee on Banking Supervision, the Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems, the International Association of Insurance Supervisors and the International Organization of Securities Commissions. Council publications are available on its website (