JOBS Act Financial Deregulation Bill Could Get Tripped Up by Unrelated Measure

By: Thursday March 15, 2012 12:18 pm

Overlooked in the mockery of the GOP House taking some innocuous-seeming bills about small business capital formation and wrapping them up into a package to call them the JOBS Act is that the underlying bills themselves are really not good at all. It’s an effort to exempt a bunch of companies from reporting requirements and [...]

Judge Poised to Strike Down Position Limits for Oil Market Speculators

By: Tuesday February 28, 2012 8:55 am

We know that Wall Street speculation shoulders part of the blame for rising gas prices, and that the Commodity Futures Trading Commission has done little to stop it. But I didn’t know that even the weak CFTC rules established last year were being challenged in federal court. And the outcome of that court case could [...]

Lawmakers, “Fair Settlement” Coalitions Pressuring AGs on Foreclosure Fraud

By: Thursday December 15, 2011 2:20 pm

One way you can judge whether the latest foreclosure fraud trial balloon is legitimate or just more talk is from the reaction by public officials who oppose a settlement. The indications are they’re taking it seriously. But they’re also making some great points about why it needs to be shut down. First, Sen. Maria Cantwell [...]

Sanders, Cantwell Decry Weak New Commodity Speculation Rule

By: Wednesday October 19, 2011 8:15 am

After the Commodity Futures Trading Commission voted to impose position limits on commodity speculators, the emails started whizzing into my inbox. Since the vote fell strictly along party lines, you’d think the left-leaning emailers would be full of praise for the plan, while the right chagrined. But you would be wrong. There are basically two [...]

Patent Reform’s Done, So Let the Job Valhalla Commence!

By: Friday September 9, 2011 7:40 am

In a way, I’m not sure why the President made a jobs speech to Congress yesterday at all. Clearly all of our job worries have been solved with the passage of a patent reform bill: As expected, the U.S. Senate passed patent reform legislation by a vote of 89 to 9 on Thursday evening, paving [...]

FTC Opens Investigation Into Oil Market Speculation

By: Tuesday June 21, 2011 7:30 am

The Federal Trade Commission has opened a long-overdue investigation into whether speculators are manipulating the price of oil. The FTC is using powers granted to them by the Dodd-Frank law, which criminalizes manipulation of the oil markets. They have the ability to subpoena market players to determine whether they are in violation, and initiate fines [...]

Saudis Told Bush Administration About Oil Speculation as Far Back as 2007

By: Thursday May 26, 2011 9:15 am

The CFTC’s move against oil speculators who criminally profited from driving up prices in 2008 has put into sharp relief the current state of the oil markets, and the role of speculation. But according to some Wikileaked documents, Saudi Arabia told the US as far back as 2007 that speculation was artificially spiking prices, which [...]

CFTC Charges Oil Traders in 2008 Speculation Scheme

By: Wednesday May 25, 2011 7:25 am

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission charged one trading house and two individuals for illegally manipulating oil prices during the price spike of 2008, when oil reached $147 a barrel, by creating the appearance of a shortage to drive up the benchmark for crude. While the action covers oil trading in 2008, the connection to today, [...]

Geithner Poised to Gut New Derivatives Rules with Foreign Exchange Swaps Exemption

By: Monday March 21, 2011 12:12 pm

I’ve said for many months now that Dodd-Frank was not a bill, but a promise to write a bill later. The implementation process lay ahead, and that meant that regulators would have the ability to interpret the will of the Congress. Congress gave them this power very willingly – there are dozens of studies and [...]

Cantwell, Senate Democrats Urge CFTC to Stop Oil Speculation

By: Friday March 18, 2011 8:00 am

Analysts in Washington point to rising tensions in the Middle East and the uncertainty in Libya as the reasons for the recent spike in oil prices. They don’t like to mention speculation. Matt Taibbi and others have documented well the speculative bubble in oil and commodities that rose in 2008, causing food riots and starvation. [...]

Regulators Chipping Away at Dodd-Frank

By: Monday November 29, 2010 10:58 am

I’ve been consistently saying that the Dodd-Frank financial regulatory law was not a law, but a promise to write a law later. Hundreds of rules and official studies followed passage in Congress, and we’re just now starting to see the fruits of that. Some of the results have been OK: trading in credit default swaps [...]

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