The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) is an independent agency with the mandate to regulate commodity futures and option markets in the United States. In 1974 the majority of futures trading took place in the agricultural sector. The futures industry has become increasingly varied over time and today encompasses a vast array of highly complex financial futures contracts.
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act created a CFTC Whistleblower Reward Program that is mandated to pay awards to qualified whistleblowers.Whistleblowers are acknowledged as an important means to realizing the CFTC’s mission of protecting market users and the public from fraud, manipulation, abusive practices and systemic risk related to derivatives that are subject to the Commodity Exchange Act.
The CFTC will pay awards to whistleblowers who provide original information about violations of the Commodity Exchange Act when that information leads to an enforcement action resulting in more than $1 million in sanctions. Only information that was first submitted to the CFTC after July 21, 2010 – the date of enactment of the Dodd-Frank Act – is eligible for a whistleblower award. However, the information can be about conduct that happened prior to 2010.
The CFTC can also pay whistleblower awards based on monetary sanctions collected by other authorities in actions that are related to a CFTC enforcement action, and are based on information provided by a CFTC whistleblower. The total amount of a whistleblower award will be between 10% and 30% of the monetary sanctions collected in either the CFTC action or the related action.
In addition to monetary payments, the CFTC’s whistleblower program provides anti-retaliation protections for whistleblowers who share information with or assist the CFTC.
There are detailed procedures and requirements for obtaining a whistleblower award. Please call Stengle Law for more information.