An appreciation by Elizabeth Robson Taylor of Richmond Green Chambers and Phillip Taylor MBE, Head of Chambers and Reviews Editor, “The Barrister”

Here it is, the third and latest edition of ‘Practical Derivatives’, from Globe Law and Business. Having gone through three editions, this book has acquired a well-deserved reputation as an authoritative source of information and advice on the plus points and pitfalls of derivatives – and, their use in a variety of company transactions.

Certainly, board members and their legal advisors -- in the interests of maintaining standards of good governance -- need to be aware of the derivatives market and the recent regulatory changes that have impacted on derivatives transactions. It is stressed that corporate governance is one factor that is common to all derivatives transactions, although differing criteria pertain to corporations and institutional investors, as well as to non-profit organisations and charities. Details are in this book.

Those charged with what you might call grave responsibilities concerning derivatives -- with their possible attendant financial liabilities -- will be glad of the wealth of expertise which the book provides from many sources. Within its more than 700 pages, the book contains informed and insightful contributions from sixteen international contributors under the able editorship of Edmund Parker and Marcin Perzanowski. You have the benefit here, of a great deal of expertise right at your fingertips in one convenient volume.

Writing in the introductory chapter, Paul Ali of the University of Melbourne positions a derivative as an instrument, the function of which is to transfer risk – and the list of such risks is a long one, from credit risk and currency fluctuations to bad weather.

As the co-editors point out, derivatives have had a chequered history since the financial upheavals of 2007-2008. Since that turbulent time however, it seems that derivatives have made a comeback and in the wake of many regulatory initiatives, they are now seen to have matured.

Reflecting the many changes that have taken place in derivatives markets over the past ten or so years, this edition of this now long-established book, has been updated with a considerable amount of new material. To complement the lengthened chapter on proposed regulatory changes, there is another chapter that includes newly developed documentation, for example, on cleared over-the-counter-derivatives.

Also in this edition, note the standard documentation and market conventions for such classes of derivatives as equity derivatives and commodity, weather and energy derivatives. Interest rate and foreign exchange derivatives are also covered and of course there’s a lot more besides in this impressive volume.

Lawyers, either employed, or retained by corporations or banks, or a wide range of other financial institutions, will appreciate the information, the practical advice and the reference resources available in this book, especially with its emphasis on derivatives as practical tools for business.

The publication date is cited as at 1st May 2017.

Phillip Taylor, Richmond Green Chambers