Financial Regulatory Forum

ANALYSIS-CFTC speculation limits may pass quietly, unchanged

U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Gary GenslerBy Christopher Doering

WASHINGTON, Dec 17 (Reuters) – New U.S. rules to limit speculation in commodity markets could move forward quickly, and with few alterations, after objections by the measure’s most vocal supporter unexpectedly delayed a key vote.

Gary Gensler, head of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, abruptly postponed a vote on Thursday to open proposed new position limits to public comment, evidence of mounting pressures internally as the agency implements dozens of rules meant to make markets safer and more transparent.

The agency must carefully balance the laws it is required to implement as part of the sweeping Dodd-Frank financial overhaul with the opinions of its five commissioners, who disagree on how they should get there.

Gensler has managed to maneuver around the two Republican commissioners who have several times voted against releasing new rules, concerned they could damage the market. This week he pushed forward with a plan to set up special exchanges to trade swaps after delaying a vote last week due to objections.

He faced concerns from the opposite corner on Thursday — Bart Chilton, a Democrat and most ardent supporter of limits, who argued that the two-part approach would leave markets unprotected from rampant speculation for too long.

OPINION-The heavy lift of harmonization-CFTC’s Chilton

–The author is Bart Chilton, a commissioner at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The opinions represent the view of the author and not that of Reuters.

By Bart Chilton

Now that the U.S. has approved the largest financial regulatory reform ever undertaken, it’s time for other nations to join in to ensure more efficient, effective market systems. Here is what we know: free markets without sufficient sideboards led to the global economic collapse.

Banks moved away from traditional lending and into exotic mortgages and foolhardy bets — like naked credit default swaps — and ultimately the American taxpayer was left with the bill for bailing out large institutions previously thought of as too big to fail.

Divide grows on setting U.S. energy position limits

Traders work in the Crude & Natural Gas Options pit at the New York Mercantile Exchange June 10, 2009.   REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton By Christopher Doering
WASHINGTON, Sept 16 (Reuters) – The top U.S. futures regulator and two main commodity exchanges were conflicted on Wednesday over who should set tougher position limits if the the Commodity Futures Trading Commission proceeds to take action to curb market manipulation.

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U.S. needs needs easier way to prove commodity futures manipulation – regulator

By Christopher Doering
WASHINGTON, Sept 15 (Reuters) – U.S. prosecutors need an easier way to prove manipulation in commodity futures cases in order to better protect the market and consumers, a commissioner with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission said on Tuesday.

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