On March 1, following an apparently unusually contentious hearing, a Federal Service Impasse Panel ordered the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to provide funding for a merit pay increase of one percent to the agency’s bargaining-unit employees retroactive to the first pay period after October 1, 2016. In addition, the CFTC must provide the same employees with a one-time bonus equal to one percent of their annual salary by no later than the first pay period in April 2017. The union representing the employees had asked for a 3 percent merit-pay increase. Although the arbitrator hearing this matter was persuaded by the comparative underpayment of relevant CFTC staff compared to other financial regulators, it also took note of the likely non-increasing budget of the agency over the next few years. Last week, the CFTC announced the hiring of Daniel Davis as its general counsel; Mr. Davis has particular experience in labor and employment law. (Click here for a copy of the CFTC’s press release announcing the hiring of Mr. Davis.)