Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2019-2020 (archived)

Module LAW44530: Global Financial Law

Department: Law

LAW44530: Global Financial Law

Type Open Level 4 Credits 30 Availability Available in 2019/20 Module Cap None.


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • The aim of this module is to provide students with an understanding of the important aspects of national and international law governing cross-border capital movements.
  • Students will learn the main elements of an evolving legal regime for international finance.
  • We will consider current issues in international finance from transactional, regulatory, and policy perspectives.
  • Advanced legal concepts intended to enhance the student's ability to engage in sophisticated comparative analysis of company law and related doctrines.
  • The aim is to cover concepts relevant to international banking, securities and currency markets and also to address topics such as financial crisis response, international institutions, government debt, and foreign assistance.
  • The overall aim of the module is therefore to provide students with a sound grasp of core issues, which can be useful for academic as well as professional work.


  • This module focuses on the law on international finance.
  • Its coverage includes law on the following: o International aspects of two major banking and capital markets, London (UK) and New York (USA). o The EU single market for financial services. o The European Economic and Monetary Union. o China’s financial markets. o Capital adequacy for financial institutions. o Foreign exchange regimes. o Euromarkets. o Asset securitization. o Emerging market debt. o Financial system reform. o Sovereign debt. o The role of the International Monetary Fund.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Students should be able to demonstrate:
  • Knowledge and understanding of the relevance and methods of the law relating to international finance;
  • Identify the main legal and institutional features of the law governing major banking and capital markets and to explain the differences between them;
  • Detailed knowledge and understanding of selected topics of particular relevance to international financial lawyers;
  • Understanding of current debates on issues such as post-Great Recession banking and financial law reform, the problems of leveraging and debt finance, and the resilience of the international financial system to future crises.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Students should be able to;
  • Engage in independent analysis of a range of laws from various jurisdictions and of international law;
  • Critically evaluate the views of legal commentators drawn from a range of disciplines and to adopt and defend a reasoned position on the issues explored;
  • Apply their knowledge to practical cases;
  • Engage in independent research on complex legal problems;
  • Understand the effects or consequences of legal rules on society and on behaviour.
Key Skills:
  • Students should be able to;
  • Demonstrate originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and interpret knowledge in the discipline;
  • Describe accurately and comprehensibly the arguments and analysis of other commentators;
  • Carry out research and solve practical questions.
  • Critical reflection on both academic and professional literature.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The module will be taught by interactive seminars, supported by private study by students.
  • Assessment will be one summative essay, providing students with a choice of topics. Students will be encouraged to develop confidence in formulating and articulating their own ideas and perspectives on the issues.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Seminars 15 Weekly Michaelmas & Epiphany 2 Hours 30
Preparation & Reading 270
Total 300

Summative Assessment

Component: Summative Essay Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Summative Essay 6,000 words 100% Essay, 6000 words, different title

Formative Assessment:

1500 word essay

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University