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September 14, 2016

CFTC Should Allow Citizen Lawsuits to Protect Consumers from Fraud and Market Manipulation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, September 14, 2016
Contact: Nick Jacobs, 202-618-6430, njacobs@bettermarkets.com

Washington, D.C. – Dennis Kelleher, President and CEO of Better Markets, issued the following statement on the announcement from Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chairman Timothy Massad on his decision to reverse course and abandon a proposal that would have allowed private lawsuits against certain energy firms engaged in fraud and manipulation:

“The CFTC should not be against a very narrowly targeted private right of action limited to claims of fraud, manipulation and other intentional misconduct.  Such citizen lawsuits are critical to protect consumers, deter illegal conduct and complement regulatory agencies with limited resources.  That’s why Congress specifically authorized them in the Commodity Exchange Act. 

“The CFTC should reject the industry’s baseless arguments that the mere threat of litigation to protect consumers will create regulatory uncertainty and additional costs that would ultimately be passed along to consumers.  As is seen frequently in the headlines, the real threat to consumers is from fraud, manipulation and other intentional misconduct, which clearly outweighs such speculative self-serving industry claims.  The CFTC should stick to its original and considered judgment that those who commit fraud and manipulation in these markets should be held accountable to their victims.”

[Better Markets’ comment letter on this proposed rule can be read here.]

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Better Markets is a non-profit, non-partisan, and independent organization founded in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis to promote the public interest in the financial markets, support the financial reform of Wall Street and make our financial system work for all Americans again. Better Markets works with allies – including many in finance – to promote pro-market, pro-business and pro-growth policies that help build a stronger, safer financial system that protects and promotes Americans’ jobs, savings, retirements and more. To learn more, visit www.bettermarkets.com.

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