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December 21, 2022

Precious metals firm Monex Deposit Company, together with related entities and individual owners, have been ordered to pay a civil penalty of $5 million, and customer restitution of $33 million, to resolve claims arising from the defendants’ operation of a retail over-the-counter trading platform, known as “Atlas,” which allowed customers to speculate on precious metals price movements, with Monex acting as the counterparty to every transaction. While the defendants claimed in marketing that leveraged trading of precious metals was highly profitable, in fact, the majority of the trades resulted in losses for customers.  CFTC

December 20, 2022

Futures commission merchant CHS Hedging LLC will pay civil penalty of $6.5 million to resolve claims that it failed to implement an adequate AML program and failed to implement risk-based limits concerning trading in an account controlled by one of its customers that owned and controlled a ranching company and other related businesses.  The customer engaged in speculative trading that was inconsistent with its financial resources and hedging needs, and, over the course of four years, made net margin payments of more than $147 million to CHS Hedging.  The government alleged that the company did not adequately investigate the source of the customer’s funds or report the transactions as suspicious.  CFTC

October 13, 2022

Daniel Adam Hewko and his company, Main & Prospect Capital, LLC (MPC), have been ordered to pay over $7.9 million and be permanently barred from registering and trading with the CFTC, after they were found to have failed to register as an associate of a commodity pool operator, misappropriated client funds, and committed fraud.  Rather than invest client funds into a MPC-managed pooled investment vehicle called the Global Opportunity Fund, Hewko used the funds to benefit himself, his family, and unrelated companies, while issuing false statements to clients that showed false growth.  CFTC

September 30, 2022

BGC Derivative Markets, L.P. (BGCD) has been ordered to pay $1.9 million in civil penalties and to comply with certain undertakings in order to settle charges of failing to accurately report nearly 16,000 swap transactions to the CFTC.  The failures were a result of 14 separate reporting systems issues.  As a result of the settlement, BGCD will have to conduct a review of its swaps reporting program, implement a reconciliation process for those transactions, and submitted a written report to the CFTC in a year.  CFTC

September 29, 2022

CX Futures Exchange, L.P. has been ordered to pay $6.5 million and comply with certain conditions to settle charges of violating the Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC regulations.  The charges involved failing to comply with certain system safeguard regulations, failing to report certain data for over 200,000 options transactions, and falsely representing to CFTC staff that it was properly reporting such data.  CFTC

September 27, 2022

Eleven financial institutions—including Bank of America, Barclays, Cantor Fitzgerald, Citi, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Jefferies, Morgan Stanley, Nomura, and UBS—have been ordered to pay over $710 million total for violating CFTC recordkeeping and supervision requirements.  Each institution was found to have failed to prevent their employees from communicating both internally and externally about firm business using informal means, such as texts, Whatsapp, and Signal, and failed to preserve those communications.  The individual payments ranged from $100 million (Bank of America) to $6 million (Cantor Fitzgerald), with the majority of institutions ordered to pay $75 million.  CFTC

September 16, 2022

William Thomas Caniff and his company, Berkley Capital Management, LLC have been ordered to pay $2.6 million in restitution and a $3.6 million civil monetary penalty after they were found to have misappropriated participant funds from two foreign exchange binary options trading pools.  Caniff directed about $1.2 million to himself and directed about $1.1 million to his partner, Arie Bos.  Bos then concealed the misappropriation by reporting false profits to pool participants.  CFTC

September 2, 2022

Swapnil Rege, SwapStar Capital LLC, and Reema Rege have been ordered to pay $5 million in disgorgement and pre-judgment interest for engaging in fraudulent solicitation and misappropriation, including on Swapnil’s part, engaging in trading despite an existing bar for prior violations, and on Reema’s part, receiving illegally-obtained profits she was not entitled to.  The orders resulted from parallel but separate enforcement actions by the CFTC and SEC, and included a permanent trading and registration ban against Swapnil.  CFTC; SEC

July 15, 2022

A number of California- and Colorado-based people and their affiliated entities have been ordered to pay over $29 million in total in order to resolve multiple charges of violating CFTC regulations.  A federal judge had found California-based John D. Black, his associates Christopher Mancuso and Joseph Tufo, and his entities Financial Tree, Financial Solution Group, and New Money Advisors—as well as Colorado-based John P. Glenn and his law firm—liable for solicitation fraud in connection with binary options and forex transactions, registration violations, and other charges.  CFTC

July 5, 2022

BNP Paribas has been ordered to pay a $6 million civil monetary penalty for its failure to correctly swap transactions as required by the Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC regulations.  According to the CFTC, BNPP failed to make more than 300,000 reports involving more than 6,000 swap transactions by U.S. persons incorrectly classified as non-U.S. persons.  Additionally, BNPP incorrectly reported thousands of bunched trades as new trades, and incorrectly reported approximately 3,000 commodity swaps as equity trades.  CFTC
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