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Lawyers encouraged by CFTC vow to avoid piling on

May 27, 2020, Global Investigations Review

Anne Termine spoke with Global Investigations Review about the U.S. Commodities and Futures Trading Commission’s vow to recognize punishments issued by other agencies when calculating its own civil penalties. Ms. Termine says the new guidance lacked information about the technical aspect of penalty calculations, such as how investigators decide how many separate offences constitute a suspicious trading pattern, which is made up of thousands of individual transactions. The CFTC penalty calculations are “a combination of art and science.” She adds, “The new guidance gives an insight into the art, but what’s missing is the science.” Defense lawyers still have no way of knowing what the CFTC’s starting point for a potential civil penalty will be, before it applies the factors highlighted in the new guidance. “This can be somewhat vexing for market participants,” she says.

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