US Watchdog CFTC Slams $720k Fine on 2 Chinese Firms for Wash Trading

US Watchdog CFTC Slams $720k Fine on 2 Chinese Firms for Wash Trading

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the US derivatives industry regulator, has slammed a fine of $720,000 on Chinese companies COFCO Corporation and Chinatex Corporation Limited.

The fine is to settle charges of wash trading, position limit violations, and reporting failures instituted by the regulatory body against the companies.

CFTC on Friday said it issued an order simultaneously filing and settling the charges against the firms.

“The order finds that between April 22 and May 1, 2020, Chinatex traders engaged in wash trading in order to liquidate a long position in the account of an affiliated company and re-establish the position in its own account, to the ultimate benefit of its parent company, COFCO,” the regulator explained in a statement.

CFTC’s order asked the firms to “desist from violating the Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC regulations, as charged.”

More on the Case

Explaining how the wash trading took place, CFTC noted that Chinatex traders entered purchase orders for Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) Cotton No. 2 futures in their accounts.

They also simultaneously entered offsetting sale orders in the account of an affiliate, the watchdog said.

“The offsetting orders were for the same delivery month, and at prices that were typically within one price tick of each other. The traders structured the orders to ensure that one set of offsetting orders were filled before entering the next set,” CFTC explained.

It added, “The orders were not intended to take a bona fide position in the market, but rather to liquidate and re-establish a position while minimizing risk and price competition.”

In the issued order, CFTC said it also found COFCO guilty of violating the rules on speculative position limit while it was trading the ICE Cotton No. 2 futures contracts.

The regulator explained, “According to the order, in March 2020, various aggregated subsidiaries of COFCO held net short positions in excess of the 5,000-contract single- and all-month position limits then applicable.

“Similarly, in November 2021, several subsidiaries of COFCO held net short positions in excess of the 5,950-contract single-month position limit then applicable. The subsidiaries also failed to file certain required reports accurately reflecting their cash-market exposure.”

Similar Action

According to CFTC, on July 20, the ICE Futures US, a marketplace for futures and options trading, settled a disciplinary action against Chinatex and an affiliate for trade practice violations.

The disciplinary action also covered for the firm and affiliate’s conducts said to have been detrimental to the exchange.

Additionally, it covered for their unauthorized use of trader identification information, position limit violations, misuse of a hedge exemption, and supervisory failure.”

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the US derivatives industry regulator, has slammed a fine of $720,000 on Chinese companies COFCO Corporation and Chinatex Corporation Limited.

The fine is to settle charges of wash trading, position limit violations, and reporting failures instituted by the regulatory body against the companies.

CFTC on Friday said it issued an order simultaneously filing and settling the charges against the firms.

“The order finds that between April 22 and May 1, 2020, Chinatex traders engaged in wash trading in order to liquidate a long position in the account of an affiliated company and re-establish the position in its own account, to the ultimate benefit of its parent company, COFCO,” the regulator explained in a statement.

CFTC’s order asked the firms to “desist from violating the Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC regulations, as charged.”

More on the Case

Explaining how the wash trading took place, CFTC noted that Chinatex traders entered purchase orders for Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) Cotton No. 2 futures in their accounts.

They also simultaneously entered offsetting sale orders in the account of an affiliate, the watchdog said.

“The offsetting orders were for the same delivery month, and at prices that were typically within one price tick of each other. The traders structured the orders to ensure that one set of offsetting orders were filled before entering the next set,” CFTC explained.

It added, “The orders were not intended to take a bona fide position in the market, but rather to liquidate and re-establish a position while minimizing risk and price competition.”

In the issued order, CFTC said it also found COFCO guilty of violating the rules on speculative position limit while it was trading the ICE Cotton No. 2 futures contracts.

The regulator explained, “According to the order, in March 2020, various aggregated subsidiaries of COFCO held net short positions in excess of the 5,000-contract single- and all-month position limits then applicable.

“Similarly, in November 2021, several subsidiaries of COFCO held net short positions in excess of the 5,950-contract single-month position limit then applicable. The subsidiaries also failed to file certain required reports accurately reflecting their cash-market exposure.”

Similar Action

According to CFTC, on July 20, the ICE Futures US, a marketplace for futures and options trading, settled a disciplinary action against Chinatex and an affiliate for trade practice violations.

The disciplinary action also covered for the firm and affiliate’s conducts said to have been detrimental to the exchange.

Additionally, it covered for their unauthorized use of trader identification information, position limit violations, misuse of a hedge exemption, and supervisory failure.”

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