LL4F2      Half Unit
The Law and Practice of International Finance

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Joanne Braithwaite NAB7.28


This course is available on the LLM (extended part-time), LLM (full-time), MSc in Law and Accounting and University of Pennsylvania Law School LLM Visiting Students. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

This course is capped at 90 students. Students must apply through Graduate Course Choice on LSEforYou.

Course content

LL4F2 examines the legal issues which arise in international financial markets based in London. This course looks at various types of financial transactions and structures which are widely used in the financial markets, such as derivatives and syndicated loans. We make reference to certain sets of trade association drafted terms throughout the course, subject to obtaining the necessary licences from the trade associations in question. With an emphasis on private law, the course considers the relevant legal, commercial and regulatory background, and the risks and protections available to participants in the global financial markets. The course is based upon an analysis of the relevant issues under English law with some reference to other systems for comparative purposes. The subject matter ties in well with the LLM evening seminars in financial and corporate law. The course will be underpinned by discussion of the legal principles involved in international finance, but the case studies referenced will be topical. In this sense, the content of the course will be adapted to the fast-moving developments affecting international markets in capital and in risk (for example, in recent sessions the course has examined mis-selling litigation in the international derivatives markets, the legal basis of prime brokerage relationships, the related Lehman Brothers litigation and the ongoing regulatory reform of the OTC derivatives markets, including the new requirement of mandatory CCP clearing triggered by the G20 statement in 2009).


20 hours of lectures and 5 hours of seminars in the LT. 2 hours of lectures in the ST.

There will be a reading week in week 6 of LT

Formative coursework

Students will be asked to submit one essay, which may be completed in exam conditions. The course also involves group presentations and other classwork.

Indicative reading

Examples of texts which will be referenced on the course: J Braithwaite, 'Law after Lehmans' (LSE Law Working Paper 11/2014); J Braithwaite 'Standard form contracts as transnational law' (2012) 75(5) MLR 779;  L Gullifer and J Payne, Corporate Finance Law: Principles and Policy (Hart, 2nd edition, 2015). A full reading list will be distributed via Moodle.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the summer exam period.

Assessment is by closed book written examination. 

Key facts

Department: Law

Total students 2018/19: 76

Average class size 2018/19: 13

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Communication
  • Specialist skills