Magazine article Modern Trader

CFTC's Message to GNP Is Firm

Magazine article Modern Trader

CFTC's Message to GNP Is Firm

Article excerpt

GNP Commodities and its chairman Brian Monieson, have felt the full weight of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

CFTC Judge George Painter hit the firm and the former Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) chairman each with 300,000 fines and also barred GNP and Monieson from doing business in the futures industry.

They were charged with failing to stop the illegal trading of two GNP brokers, ira Greenspon and Norman Furlett, who were accused of diverting winning trades into their own accounts at customer expense.

According to Dennis Klejna, head of the CFTC's enforcement division, Monieson was warned repeatedly by his employees about the traders. Greenspon and Furlett were fined $75,000 each and barred from the industry Neither is expected to appeal.

Monieson says he will appeal to the CFTC and federal courts, if needed. That process could take a year.

Blames politics

Calling the charges totally irrational, Monieson contends the CFTC's decision is "political, rather than legal," stemming from the agency's need to prove its regulatory prowess in the face of potential jurisdictional takeover by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

"(CFTC officials) need to show that they're the toughest cops in town," Monieson says.

Klejna says those statements are outrageous," adding the case began long before the CFTC's enforcement abilities attracted attention.

"I think it's pretty ironic that someone who brought a cabinet minister and Leo Melamed to his trial is accusing one judge of being political rather than legal," Klejna adds. …

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