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RELEASE: pr5489-08

  • Release: 5489-08
    For Release: April 21, 2008

    Agriculture Forum Agenda and Participant Details Released

    Washington, DC – Today, the CFTC released the agenda and the names of participants for the April 22 agriculture forum.

    “These are extraordinary times in the agricultural commodity markets, and this forum is designed to bring all the different voices and views from around the marketplace together for discussion and consideration,” said CFTC Acting Chairman Walt Lukken. “The CFTC keeps a watchful eye on the markets and the upcoming forum will provide critical fact-finding and dialogue so we may better understand and evaluate the inter-related factors impacting the futures markets."

    The forum is being held in the CFTC Hearing Room in Washington, D.C. It begins at 9 a.m. on April 22, 2008 – doors open at 8:30 a.m. Agenda and participant details are listed below:

    I. Agenda

    9:00-9:30 a.m.

    Opening Remarks

    9:30-10:00 a.m.

    Presentation: John Fenton; Dave Kass; Gerald Bange

    10:00-11:00 a.m.

    Roundtable Discussion:
    Price Discovery in the Agriculture Futures Markets


      a. Overview of fundamentals in markets

      b. Role of speculators, index funds and commercial hedgers

      c. The adequacy of transparency in the markets

      d. The adequacy of contract terms and conditions

    11:00 -11:15 a.m.


    11:15-11:45 a.m.

    Presentation: Dr. Jeffrey Harris; Dr. Eugene Kunda

    11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

    Roundtable Discussion:
    Hedging in the Agricultural Futures Markets


      a. Convergence of futures and cash prices

      b. Forward contracting in the current markets

      c. Role of agricultural swaps and other risk management tools

    12:30 -1:30 p.m.

    Lunch Break

    1:30-2:00 p.m.

    Presentation: Andrew Jacob; Esther George

    2:00-2:45 p.m.

    Roundtable Discussion:
    Margin Levels (Performance Bond) and Agricultural Credit


      a. Role of margin and the clearing system

      b. Overview of agricultural credit and record margin levels

      c. Proper determination of margin

      d. Price limits and margin levels

      e. Credit market conditions and lending outlook

    2:45-3:00 p.m.

    Q&A; Concluding Remarks

    II. Agriculture Forum Participants

    Government/Academic Participants:


    CFTC Acting Chairman and Commissioners

    Mark Keenum, U.S. Department of Agriculture

    Leland Strom, Farm Credit Administration

    Jeff Harris, Commodity Futures Trading Commission

    John Fenton, Commodity Futures Trading Commission

    Dave Kass, Commodity Futures Trading Commission

    Gerald Bange, U.S. Department of Agriculture

    Esther George, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City

    Eugene Kunda, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

    Andrew Jacob, Farm Credit Administration

    Invited Roundtable Participants:


    Charlie Carey, CME Group

    David Lehman, CME Group

    Thomas Farley, ICE Futures, U.S.

    Layne Carlson, Minneapolis Grain Exchange

    Roger Hipwell, Minneapolis Grain Exchange

    Seaver Sowers, American Bankers Association

    Samuel Miller, American Bankers Association

    John Kowalik, CalPERS

    Doug Hepworth, Gresham Investment Management LLC

    Bob Greer, PIMCO

    Robert Ellis, Ridgefield Capital

    Billy Dunavant, Dunavant Enterprises

    Andy Weil, American Cotton Shippers’ Association

    Joe Nicosia, American Cotton Shippers’ Association

    Chuck Coley, National Cotton Council of America

    Woods Eastland, AMCOT

    Wallace Darnielle, AMCOT

    Tom Coyle, National Grain and Feed Association

    Jerry McReynolds, National Association of Wheat Growers

    Diana Klemme, Grain Service Corporation

    Garry Niemeyer, National Corn Growers Association

    Luke Lind, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association

    Steve Wellman, American Soybean Association

    Tom Buis, National Farmers Union

    Bob Stallman, American Farm Bureau Federation

    Mike Walter, Commodity Markets Council

    David Brown, American Bakers Association

    John Popp, Independent Bakers Association

    Jim Byrum, Michigan Agri-business Council

    Justin Towery, USA Rice Federation

    Media Contacts
    Ianthe Zabel

    R. David Gary

    Last Updated: April 21, 2008