FIA Special Report: Congress Approves Additional Funding for CFTC
The federal budget compromise worked out by Congress and the White House late last week contains a 20% increase in funding for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, one of the few branches of government to avoid a cut in funding.
The budget compromise, which is contained in a form of legislation called a continuing resolution, will reduce the overall budget for the federal government by $37.6 billion, according to Congressional leaders. The CFTC, however, will receive $202.7 million for fiscal 2011, which ends on Sept. 30. That amount is $34 million above the $168.8 million in funding that the agency received in fiscal 2010. The continuing resolution also directs the CFTC to spend at least $37.2 million on the "highest priority information technology activities" such as systems to integrate data on futures and swaps.
According to a statement issued on April 12 by the Senate Appropriations Committee, the budget resolution "supports staffing increases and key IT investments to permit the CFTC to meet its core mission and begin to implement new responsibilities for the regulation and oversight of registration, trading, and clearance of over-the-counter swaps." The Committee also said the legislation "provides critical funding to better protect the average investor and increase safeguards against excessive speculation."
The Securities and Exchange Commission also received additional funding. The budget resolution provides the SEC with $1.185 billion in funding, an increase of $74 million above fiscal 2010. The additional funding will help the SEC's ability to police the markets and enable it to track "highly sophisticated market participants who currently trade at almost the speed of light and spend billions each year on their own IT infrastructures," the committee said.
The continuing resolution is now pending a vote in the House and Senate later this week.
Click Here for Full Text of Continuing Resolution (see page 250)
Click Here for Senate Appropriations Committee Statement