Industry Amicus in CFTC Manipulation Case

On January 12, 2016, MFA, CME Group Inc., the Commodity Markets Council (CMC), Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (ICE) and the Futures Industry Association, Inc. (FIA) submitted an amicus brief to the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.

The brief supported the long-standing legal standard for attempted price manipulation and  explained why adopting a new legal standard for intent in attempted manipulation cases departs from settled law. For decades, the jurisprudence on price manipulation under the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA), including the CFTC’s own precedents, established and maintained an important, carefully defined line between trading misconduct and legitimate trading—a line designed to advance the public interests enumerated by Congress. Contrary to three decades of caselaw, the CFTC is now asserting that proof of intent to create an “artificial price” is not required to prove attempted price manipulation.  Because such standard is contrary to law and will bring adverse policy consequences, the amici support the long-standing legal standard for attempted price manipulation.