The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has reported on the financial details related to the government agency’s enforcement results for the fiscal year 2014. The regulatory agency obtained a record $3.27 billion in monetary sanctions from companies and individuals after filing 67 enforcement actions.
CFTC’s Chairman, Timothy Massad, commented in the announcement, “The CFTC is committed to aggressive enforcement and policing of our financial markets. Through the outstanding work of CFTC enforcement staff, the CFTC sends the message that the protection of customers and the integrity of the markets are paramount.”
Civil monetary penalties totaled $1.8 billion, while the remaining $1.4 billion were attributed to restitution and disgorgement. The $3.27 billion in sanctions include more than $1.8 billion in civil monetary penalties and more than $1.4 billion in restitution and disgorgement.
However, these amounts only reflect the total monetary sanctions ordered by the CFTC and not the total amount collected.
The collection effort is lead by the U.S. Department of Justice or the U.S. Department of the Treasury. The details regarding the actual amount the CFTC collects are not released by the regulator. In many cases collection efforts do not result in an actual recovery of funds, because the wrongdoers frequently do not have sufficient assets to cover the fines.
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While this brings the CFTC’s total monetary sanctions over the past two fiscal years to more than $5 billion (more than the total sanctions imposed during the prior 10 fiscal years combined), there is no official data published about the fine collection rate.
According to the CFTC, the amount of monetary sanctions dwarfs the U.S. financial regulator’s operating budget for the fiscal year – $3.3 billion being almost eight times the government funding received by the Commission this year.
The CFTC’s Enforcement Division also opened more than 240 new investigations in FY 2014.
According to its Director, Aitan Goelman, “The Enforcement Division’s results reflect the unwavering dedication and hard work of our talented staff. Going forward, we will continue to enforce the rules governing the behavior of market participants to ensure that the wrongdoers who seek to take advantage of customers or game our markets are pursued and punished so that the integrity of our markets is protected.”