Washington, DC – The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) today issued an Order filing and settling charges against Multigrain SA (Multigrain) and Agricola Xingu SA (Agricola Xingu), Brazil-based companies that produce and trade cotton and other agricultural products, for failing to comply with their legal obligation as reportable traders to submit weekly Form 304 Reports that show their call cotton purchases and sales.
The CFTC Order explains that CFTC Regulations specifically require cotton merchants and dealers that hold or control at least 100 cotton futures positions, the reportable level for cotton futures contracts under CFTC Regulations, to file CFTC Form 304 Reports that show their call cotton purchases and sales as of the close of business Friday, and no later than two business days following the date of the report. According to the Order, call cotton refers to physical cotton bought or sold, or contracted for purchase or sale, at a price to be fixed later based on a specified delivery month’s futures price. As stated in the Order, the CFTC uses information it gathers from CFTC Form 304 Reports in its weekly Cotton On-Call Reports, published with other Market Reports on the CFTC website at www.cftc.gov/MarketReports/CottonOnCall/index.htm.
The CFTC Order finds that on at least 24 occasions between January 1, 2013 and October 31, 2013, Multigrain and Agricola Xingu held or controlled at least 100 cotton futures positions, but failed to file CFTC Form 304 Reports as required, either by failing to file Form 304 Reports or filing Form 304 Reports late.
The CFTC Order requires Multigrain and Agricola Xingu to jointly pay a $500,000 civil monetary penalty and prohibits them from committing future violations of the CFTC Regulation requiring reports pertaining to cotton call purchases and sales, as charged. The Order also requires Multigrain and Agricola Xingu to adopt internal controls that are reasonably designed to ensure that they comply fully with enhanced written procedures they have adopted regarding future compliance with the CFTC cotton reporting Regulation.
Consistent with this filing, the CFTC issued a market advisory on May 8, 2013 to remind cotton market participants of their ongoing obligation to comply in a timely manner with applicable reporting obligations. See CFTC Staff Advisory No. 13-14 (Obligation of Reportable Market Participants to File CFTC Form 304 Reports for Call Cotton in a Timely Manner as Required by Commission Regulation 19.02) (May 8, 2013). http://www.cftc.gov/ucm/groups/public/@lrlettergeneral/documents/letter/13-14.pdf
CFTC Division of Enforcement staff responsible for this action are Stephanie Reinhart, Joseph Patrick, Susan Gradman, Scott Williamson, Rosemary Hollinger, and Richard Wagner.