Recap of first CFTC hearing into speculation

Commodify Me! has been busy with the daily grind of life and would like to apologise for not posting this sooner.

Anyway, as we all know, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission held the first of its three hearings last week looking at ways to curb excessive speculation in oil, gas and other engery markets.

The New York Times provides a nice summary of the first day’s proceedings:

The country’s top regulator of commodity markets said Tuesday that the government should “seriously consider” strict limits on the trades of purely financial investors in the futures markets for oil, natural gas and other energy products.  READ HERE.

And CNNMoney.com provides a summary of day two:

Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Gary Gensler sounded even more convinced Wednesday that trading limits must be imposed on speculative energy traders, and he found support from two of the biggest financial players in commodities markets.”No longer must we debate the issue of whether or not to set position limits,” Gensler said during the second day of CFTC hearings on excessive speculation in the energy markets. He added that the only remaining questions are how to go about it. READ MORE.

CNNMoney.com also has comments from big commodity players, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase, both of who had representatives speak at the hearings:

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) came out in favor of position limits both on and off exchanges in a hearing before the Commodity Futures Trading Commission on Wednesday.But the bank wants exemptions maintained for swap dealers that help commodity end users buy and sell derivatives to reduce their exposure to price fluctuations. JPMorgan’s views closely matched those of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS), which also had a representative at the hearing. READ MORE.

You might also like to read the Seattle Times and the Houston Chronicle.

CFTC considering restrictions on wheat trades

The Associated Press has a story about the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) considering restrictions in the wheat futures market after a year-long investigation by the investigative panel of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee raised concerns that excessive speculation has artificially inflated prices, hampering risk management by farmers and grain processors. READ HERE

CFTC hopeful of new regulation by late October

A follow up story by Reuters about the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s process and plans for regulating excessive speculation in the commodity market.

For those who have not been following this story, the CFTC’s moves are part of the Obama administration’s plans to tighten U.S. financial regulation and prevent another banking and market crisis.  Critics have  argued the global financial meltdown over the past several months was caused by laxity in the financial markets:

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission will move aggressively to rein in excessive speculation in energy and commodity markets by focusing on expanding its existing authority and could have new regulations in place by late October.

Bart Chilton, one of five commissioners at the CFTC, said he could not predict what the agency will do, but he would like to see the proposed rules issued in September, then implemented by late October or November after a period of public comment. READ HERE

As a keen supporter of tighter regulation on the commodity exchnge,  Commodify Me! will be following the develpoments of this story with great interest and will be providing comment once details of the CFTC’s plans are a little clearer.