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Chairman Hensarling Statement on CFTC Cross-Border Swaps Announcement


Washington, Nov 15 -

Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) issued the following statement about the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) staff announcement related to cross-border swaps transactions:

“At a time millions of Americans still can’t find a job, this surprise decision made late Thursday afternoon by unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats at the CFTC will do nothing but inject more uncertainty into our weak economy. The CFTC staff – not the commissioners, but the staff – decided late Thursday afternoon that swaps transactions that had been permissible Thursday afternoon would not be permissible on Friday morning. How is this sudden and unexpected change fair to the small business owners, the farmers and the manufacturers who rely on these transactions to stay in business? How is it fair to the grandmother who is planning to fly to visit her grandkids for Thanksgiving that the cost of her plane ticket will go up since airlines use these transactions to keep the cost of fuel down? This is yet another example of out-of-touch Washington bureaucrats making rules in a vacuum and acting with absolutely no regard for the impact their arbitrary and capricious actions have on our economy.

“Republicans and Democrats in the House joined together by a vote of 301-124 to pass H.R. 1256, the bipartisan Swaps Jurisdiction Certainty Act, in an attempt to bring certainty, clarity and some sanity to the CFTC’s actions. Regrettably, the Democrat-controlled Senate has so far failed to act on this bipartisan bill, thereby setting the stage for today’s market confusion and putting American businesses at a disadvantage with foreign competitors. The Democrat leadership in the Senate needs to bring this bipartisan bill up for a vote and put a stop to this misguided policy that will drive capital away from our shores, eliminate American jobs and raise prices on consumers.”