John Sievwright was the chairman of the FIA in 1997 and a strong proponent of common clearing. Sievwright, a chartered accountant, first joined Merrill Lynch in 1988from bankers Trust and played a key role in building the firm’s equity derivatives business in the early 1990s. From 1995 to 1998, he was head of global financial futures and options at Merrill Lynch and co-chairman of Merrill Lynch Futures. During his FIA chairmanship, he commenced the firstserious industry discussions of common clearing with the Chicago exchanges, forcefully emphasizing its importance as a means for greater efficiency in the futures industry. He subsequently became president and chief operating officer of Merrill Lynch japan Securities. Currently, he is managing director and chief operating officer of Merrill Lynch’s global markets and investment banking operations.