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January 17, 2014

Budget Woes Leave Swaps Agency Outgunned by Wall Street

When President Barack Obama gave federal workers a 1 percent pay raise at the start of the year, employees at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission assumed they’d get the boost. They didn’t.

In a brief e-mail last week, the CFTC said the cost-of-living increase wouldn’t kick in until August paychecks. While the agency provided no explanation, employees chalked it up to budget woes that forced the derivatives regulator last week to quietly obtain an emergency infusion of funds just to keep its doors open, according to four people familiar with the situation.

The escalating budget crisis has spurred unrest within the 700-person agency and hampered its work, the people said. More than a dozen senior employees, many complaining of low pay, have quit for jobs on Wall Street or at law firms. Others at the CFTC’s Washington headquarters have discussed joining a labor union, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the friction isn’t public.”

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Read full Bloomberg article here

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