Wyoming Federal Judge Sides With States and Industry, Strikes Down BLM Hydraulic Fracturing Rule

On June 21, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the District of Wyoming struck down the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM’s) hydraulic fracturing regulations, finding that BLM “lacked Congressional authority to promulgate the regulations.” This decision is a win for industry and states’ rights, setting aside a federal rule that is unnecessarily duplicative, burdensome and beyond the scope of BLM’s statutory authority. This is yet another setback for the Obama Administration’s second term regulatory push, as previous industry challenges have resulted in the stay of other major new regulatory...

CFTC Seeks Comments Regarding ICE Futures U.S. Rules Governing Trading on Non-Public Information After ICE and NYMEX Interpretations Differ on “Pre-Hedging” Block Trades

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (“CFTC”) is seeking comments regarding an amendment (Submission No. 16-67) ICE Futures U.S. (“ICE”) has proposed to its Block Trade Frequently Asked Questions (“Block Trade FAQ”) to clarify “the extent to which parties may engage in pre-hedging or anticipatory hedging related to the consummation of a block trade.” Specifically, the amendment clarifies that, as a general matter, “Parties to a block trade may engage in pre-hedging or anticipatory hedging of the position that they believe in good faith will result from the consummation of the block...

U.S. Futures Exchanges Disciplinary Actions Report - May 2016

NYMEX NYMEX 15-0150-BC-3 and NYMEX 15-0150-BC-4 EFRP Violation of Rule 538.C – Exchange for Related Positions – Related Position. On August 15, 2014, September 5, 2014 and September 24, 2014, a non-member entity allegedly executed three non-bona fide Exchange for Related Position (“EFRP”) transactions in various energy products. In addition, on August 4, 2014, a second non-member entity allegedly entered into a non-bona fide EFRP transaction on behalf of two managed customer accounts. Both entities failed to evidence an associated related position for the EFRP transactions, thus rendering the...

FERC Accepts CAISO’s Proposed Tariff Amendments Addressing Inoperability of Aliso Canyon

On June 1, 2016, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) accepted revisions to the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) tariff to address market conditions associated with the limited operability of the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility. [1] Aliso Canyon, one of the largest natural gas storage facilities in the country, has been closed since October 2015, when a large natural gas leak was discovered there. As a result of the closure, concerns were raised about potential reliability issues entering into the high demand summer months, prompting CAISO to file proposed...