Derivatives and trading

We represent hedge funds, corporate treasuries, financial institutions, managed account platforms, asset managers and high-net-worth individuals in structuring, negotiating and executing complex and bespoke derivative instruments.

We advise on a wide range of products including swaps, options, forwards and repos, covering interest rate, fixed income, currency, commodity, equity, credit, basket and index underliers.  The team routinely advises on matters such as:

  • prime brokerage and issues around rehypothecation and segregation;
  • custody and collateral;
  • securities lending and margin financing matters;
  • repos;
  • structured products;
  • exchange traded derivatives;
  • central clearing including OTC clearing under Dodd-Frank and EMIR;
  • cash equities and cash bond trading under broker terms of business; and
  • electronic trading arrangements.

Our team works alongside our specialist lawyers in financial services, regulatory, capital markets, tax and dispute resolution and is able to advise on both the day-to-day trading requirements of our clients, and the most complex derivative and structured product transactions in both transactional and contentious roles.

We have a global client base; we act for managers in London, New York and Hong Kong and have daily experience negotiating for these clients with the London and New York offices of the leading US and European banks and broker dealers.

What people are saying


"I find the team extremely supportive, available, well informed and responsive. They work very well together, involving associates and juniors, while maintaining a high level of service."

Chambers UK 2018

"Macfarlanes LLP 'has an excellent team'."

The UK Legal 500 2017

"They listen and make an assessment of how you want to work with them, and work closely according to that."

Chambers UK 2017

"The derivatives team gives you the answer quickly and succinctly and with a minimum of legalese. They have a deep understanding of the market and the commercial drivers for both buy-side and sell-side."

Chambers UK 2017

"They bring a fresh approach: they think about solutions in a different way and get excited about the work we give them."

Chambers UK 2016

"Macfarlanes LLP provides 'high quality service tailored to the buy-side'."

The UK Legal 500 2015