Wednesday, June 11, 2008

CFTC to discuss energy speculators with Fed, SEC

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- The Commodities Futures Trading Commission said Tuesday that it is establishing a task force to study the role of speculators and index traders in commodities that will include representatives of the Federal Reserve, the Securities Exchange Commission and other agencies.
The announcement comes as the futures regulator furthers its investigation into whether financial investors are driving up the price of oil and other commodities, and if so, by how much. The task force also will include staff representatives of the Treasury Department, the Agriculture Department and the Energy Department.
The CFTC's own analysis of commodities prices and index traders, or investors who invest in commodities via a benchmark, such as the Dow Jones-AIG Commodity Index, has found no significant correlation between these financial investors and recent price spikes.
Still, under pressure by big users and producers of commodities as well as Congress, the regulator has acknowledged that it needs to dig deeper into trading data. It's already said that it will require more data from certain types of traders, such as swaps dealers and overseas oil traders.
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