Opening Statement, Chairman of the CFTC’s Agriculture Advisory Committee

Commissioner Michael Dunn

May 19, 2011

Welcome to the 35th meeting of the CFTC’s Agriculture Advisory Committee.

The Agriculture Advisory Committee provides a forum for building a base of knowledge at the Commission on issues that matter to the agricultural community. This is particularly important at a time like this, when the Commission is tasked with writing dozens of regulations to implement the Dodd-Frank Act. The Commission is acutely aware of the far reaching impacts that these regulations may have, but we depend upon those who will be impacted by our rules to provide us with their thoughts and concerns in order to be certain that the Commission’s regulations do not have unintended consequences. Now that the Commission has essentially finished the process of proposing rules and has received many comments from the public, this is an ideal time to convene the committee and discuss some of the concerns that have been raised in the comment letters.

Hopefully, Agricultural Advisory Committee meetings also serve the important role of making the Commission’s work less opaque and more accessible to the various components of the trading industry and to the public at large. As I have stated on a number of occasions, the Commission’s process for proposing regulations pursuant to Dodd-Frank has been more open than any I have been involved with, and I commend Chairman Gensler for his leadership in this regard. It is my hope that today’s meeting will provide the public with further information as to what the Commission is doing and why, and that we will have a meaningful dialogue regarding both the Commission’s proposals and the committee’s concerns.

Thank you to everyone who is in attendance—to my fellow Commissioners, to Advisory Committee Members, the Commission Staff and the public. I especially want to thank the panelists today who are each valued members of the Commission Staff. As you all know, we have a full time job overseeing commodity trading, but this year we have the additional privilege of writing dozens of new regulations implementing the Dodd-Frank Act.

Today we will hear presentations by the CFTC staff on four topics, based on current events and requested by members of the AAC:

First—an update on agricultural commodity markets in general, focusing on the impacts of recent flooding and issues of convergence

Second—a presentation on the Commission’s proposed rule regarding position limits and hedge exemptions

Third—a presentation on the Commission’s proposed rule regarding the swap dealer definition and end user exception

Fourth—a presentation on the Commission’s proposed rule regarding margin requirements

After each presentation, the Committee Members will have an opportunity to ask questions and discuss the issues raised in the presentation and the proposed rules.

Again, thank you all for participating in this important event; the Commission appreciates your input to the very important task of implementing Dodd-Frank.

Last Updated: May 20, 2011