Financial Services Coalition Launches Campaign to Set Record Straight About Investors’ Role in the Commodity Markets

23 July 2008

A broad-based coalition from the financial services industry launched a public relations campaign today to educate lawmakers about the negative consequences of imposing unnecessary regulations on investors’ participation in the commodity markets.

The Coalition to Protect Competitive Markets was organized to respond to the criticisms from special interest groups that Congress should adopt new regulations on investors as a response to skyrocketing oil and gas prices.

The coalition partners issued the following statement:

“We understand why increases in energy prices alarm members of Congress. These price increases are hitting home all over America, from ordinary households to businesses large and small. But we should make sure that any responses should strengthen, not harm, the proper functioning of commodity markets. We want to work with Congress on this issue and we believe that additional funds should be appropriated for The Commodity Futures Trading Commission to ensure that it has the resources to conduct proper oversight of the commodity markets.

“But restricting the ability of U.S. investors to participate in these global markets will make it harder for American citizens, including millions of baby boomers saving for retirement, to diversify their holdings and offset losses in equity and bond markets. These restrictions will also damage our economy by driving these markets overseas and making it more expensive for bona fide hedgers to protect themselves from volatile prices.

“There are solutions to high oil and gas prices. Preventing investment in the commodity markets isn’t one of them.”

In addition to making the case against new regulations on investors, the coalition is encouraging members of Congress to pursue a sensible national energy strategy that increases domestic supplies of oil while curbing consumption through the promotion of alternative energy sources and to examine the fiscal and monetary policies that have weakened the dollar.

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