The Netherlands is known more for its bucolic landscapes, dotted with windmills and tulip beds, than for its connection to energy markets. But that’s where the Commodities Futures Trading Commission has finally found some evil speculators to blame for high oil prices.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission alleged that the fund, Optiver, two of its subsidiaries and three employees manipulated energy futures prices during the last minutes of trading, using an illegal technique known in market jargon as “banging the close”.
CFTC officials said that bringing the case now had no political implication.
The US regulator said Optiver made more than $1m through manipulation of crude oil, gasoline and heating oil futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange.