Central Counterparty Clearing House - CCP

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DEFINITION of 'Central Counterparty Clearing House - CCP'

An organization that exists in various European countries that helps facilitate trading done in European derivatives and equities markets. These clearing houses are often operated by the major banks in the country. The house's prime responsibility is to provide efficiency and stability to the financial markets that they operate in.

BREAKING DOWN 'Central Counterparty Clearing House - CCP'

There are two main processes that are carried out by CCPs: clearing and settlement of market transactions. Clearing relates to identifying the obligations of both parties on either side of a transaction. Settlement occurs when the final transfer of securities and funds occur.

CCPs benefit both parties in a transaction because they bear most of the credit risk. If two individuals deal with one another, the buyer bears the credit risk of the seller, and vice versa. When a CCP is used the credit risk that is held against both buyer and seller is coming from the CCP, which in all likelihood is much less than in the previous situation.

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