On February 13, Senator Carl Levin introduced the “Prevent Excessive Speculation Act,” which, if enacted, would authorize the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to regulate over-the-counter derivatives transactions in energy and agricultural products, including the imposition of speculative position limits and large trader reporting requirements. The bill also would require the CFTC to review and revise the definition of “bona fide hedging transaction” as used in calculating speculative positions.
In addition, the proposed legislation would require the CFTC to establish speculative position limits for futures contracts in all energy and agricultural commodities traded on U.S. exchanges. A foreign exchange that lists an energy contract that settles against a contract traded on a U.S. exchange would not be allowed to provide direct access from the United States, unless the foreign exchange agreed to impose speculative position limits comparable to those of the U.S. exchange and to comply with certain reporting requirements. Finally, the proposed legislation would provide the CFTC with the same enforcement authority over U.S. traders on foreign exchanges that it has over traders on U.S. exchanges. The bill was referred to the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry.