The United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas dismissed energy-related claims under the Commodity Exchange Act (CEA) alleging manipulation of prices in organized energy trading markets with a ruling that private litigants could not bring such claims. In Aspire Commodities, LP v. GDF Suez North America, Inc, the defendants argued that the CEA requirements exempted the energy transactions under a final order issued by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
“The CFTC determined that the exemption in question was in the public interest, in part, because the requesting parties and relevant transactions were already subject to comprehensive federal and state regulation,” said Joshua D. Jones, Bressler Principal in Birmingham, AL and co-chair of the Section of Litigation’s Securities Litigation Committee.
Jones also addressed the question ‘Can Private Litigants Avoid Dismissal under the CFTC Exemption?’ “There are a couple of options,” said Jones. “One is that a plaintiff could state claims under the anti-fraud, anti-manipulation, or scienter-based provisions contained in the CEA because those claims aren’t exempted from the CFTC’s final order. Another approach is the approach the plaintiffs tried to take in this case, which is to argue that the transactions fall outside the purview of the exemption.”
To read the full article and more of what Joshua Jones has to say, please click here.