Release Number 8262-20
CFTC Awards Whistleblower $250,000
September 29, 2020
Washington, D.C. — The Commodity Futures Trading Commission today announced an award of approximately $250,000 to a whistleblower who provided significant information that caused the CFTC to open an investigation. The whistleblower also provided substantial assistance to staff throughout the investigation. The award was reduced, however, because the whistleblower did not promptly report the violations.
“Time is of the essence when it comes to reporting violations of the Commodity Exchange Act and the CFTC’s rules and regulations,” said Director of Enforcement James McDonald. “A delay in reporting can result in further harm to investors, a delay to the start of a CFTC investigation, and undermines the health of our markets.”
Whistleblower Office Director Christopher Ehrman added, “This whistleblower’s information was specific and significant enough to spawn multiple enforcement actions.”
About the CFTC’s Whistleblower Program
The CFTC’s Whistleblower Program was created under Section 748 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. Since issuing its first award in 2014, the CFTC has awarded approximately $120 million to whistleblowers. CFTC actions associated with those awards have resulted in monetary relief totaling nearly $950 million. The CFTC issues awards not only for the agency’s enforcement actions, but also for actions brought by other domestic or foreign regulators if certain conditions are met.
The CEA provides confidentiality protections for whistleblowers. Regardless of whether the CFTC grants an award, the CFTC will not disclose any information that could reasonably be expected to reveal a whistleblower’s identity, except in limited circumstances. Consistent with this confidentiality protection, the CFTC will not disclose the name of the enforcement action in which the whistleblower provided information or the exact dollar amount of the award granted.
Whistleblowers are eligible to receive between 10 and 30 percent of the monetary sanctions collected. All whistleblower awards are paid from the CFTC Customer Protection Fund, which was established by Congress, and is financed entirely through monetary sanctions paid to the CFTC by violators of the CEA. No money is taken or withheld from injured customers to fund the program.
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Anyone with information related to potential violations of the CEA or the CFTC’s rules and regulations can submit a tip electronically by filing a Form TCR (Tip, Complaint or Referral) online at https://whistleblower.gov/overview/submitatip.
To learn more about the CFTC’s Whistleblower Program, please visit the program’s website at https://www.whistleblower.gov/.