SPEECHES & TESTIMONY

Commissioner Behnam Statement on the CFTC Budget Cut

March 22, 2018

Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Commissioner Rostin Behnam issued the following statement on the congressional budget proposal that reflects a decrease in the CFTC's funding level:

"The recently released congressional budget proposal unimaginably cuts the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC’s) funding level, leaving our nation’s critically important derivatives market and the general public increasingly vulnerable to systemic (and other) risk, and susceptible to fraud and manipulation.  Derivatives markets played a significant role in the 2008 financial crisis, and the Congress responded with Wall Street reform that requires the CFTC to oversee the approximately $600 trillion dollar previously unregulated over-the-counter swaps markets.  While the CFTC has continuously met and exceeded the challenges of bringing these markets under our jurisdiction, its efforts have never been matched with requisite resources.

"Growing cyber threats, domestically and internationally, examinations of our clearinghouses at home and abroad, and the rapid growth of the FinTech industry present new, challenging issues that the CFTC will not have the resources to address in a timely and adequate manner.  Simply put, the CFTC cannot responsibly innovate and meet the needs of rapidly evolving markets and market participants absent additional funding.

"I will continue to support Chairman Giancarlo’s budget request – and more – as this agency and its dedicated staff continue to do the best job they can to keep these global markets safe, transparent, and free from fraud and manipulation."