SPEECHES & TESTIMONY

Opening Statement of Chairman Heath Tarbert Before the Energy and Environmental Markets Advisory Committee

November 7, 2019

 

Good morning.  I am very pleased to be attending my first EEMAC meeting as CFTC Chairman.

 

America’s energy markets are part of the bedrock of our economy.  The United States is the world’s largest producer of both natural gas and oil.[1]  It’s the second-largest generator of electricity overall.[2]

 

One of my strategic goals as Chairman is to regulate our derivatives markets to promote the interests of all Americans.  This is critical for energy in particular.  

Energy derivatives markets affect the pocketbook of every American, from the price of gasoline at the pump to the cost of heating our homes.

 

To achieve this goal, the Commission needs insight from all of you.  That makes today’s EEMAC meeting especially important.  I want to thank Commissioner Berkovitz and his staff for sponsoring this meeting.  Thanks also to Abigail Knauff, the EEMAC Designated Federal Officer, for organizing it.  

 

Of course, I am also grateful to the Chair, Dena Wiggins, and to all members and associate members of the EEMAC.  Thank you for taking the time to share your valuable experience and perspectives.

 

Many of the CFTC’s core agenda items directly touch the energy markets.  The Commission’s forthcoming position limits rule proposal is one example.  The proposal is intended to provide an appropriately flexible bona fide hedging exemption.  This will allow energy producers, merchandisers, and distributors to better manage the many risks of their businesses.  

 

Another example is the Commission’s swap data reporting rules.  The changes we propose will be designed to streamline reporting.  This should reduce regulatory burdens and also make it easier to use swaps data, increasing transparency in energy swaps markets.

 

These and other efforts will help promote America’s energy derivatives markets through sound regulation.  I look forward to working with you all to ensure that our energy derivatives markets continue to serve participants and their customers. 

 

 


 

[1] U.S. Energy Information Administration, The U.S. Leads Global Petroleum and Natural Gas Production with Record Growth in 2018, Today in Energy (August 20, 2019), https://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=40973; U.S. Energy Information Administration, The United States is Now the Largest Global Crude Oil Producer, Today in Energy (Sept. 12, 2018), https://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=37053.