Professors Jennifer Payne and Louise Gullifer organised a conference on 16 May 2014 on ‘Investing in Securities’ at Harris Manchester College. The morning session was devoted to the difficulties and risks posed by the modern methods of holding, transferring and using securities. A general overview of the situation and the progress of the various transnational and European reform initiatives was given by Professor Joanna Benjamin, after which Guy Morton and Habib Motani both gave talks focusing on the benefits and perceived pitfalls of rehypothecation (including the inaccuracy of the term itself: the process would be better described as ‘use’ of securities). Dr Philipp Paech and Professor Robert Stevens led a lively discussion on the best approach to the conflict of laws where securities are held through intermediaries.
The afternoon session was a panel discussion on the duties of investment intermediaries. Law Commissioner David Hertzell introduced the Law Commission’s project on this subject; this was followed by comments from leading practitioners (Vanessa Knapp, Deborah Sabalot and Dominic Hill) and academics from the universities of Oxford (Professor Joshua Getzler) and Boston (Professor Tamar Frankel). All the sessions included opportunities for detailed discussion by the experts attending the conference, which led to an informative and stimulating experience for everyone who participated.