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We are a leading law firm in compliance with commodity trading regulations and the defense of enforcement of those regulations by regulators.   Our team includes lawyers who have held in-house positions overseeing bank and trading company commodity businesses and structuring transactions, as well as senior positions with federal energy commodity regulators. We are consistently engaged in representations before the U.S. CFTC and the FERC and are well known to agency staff. Our large dedicated team with significant experience in the full range of commodity regulation has an in-depth understanding of our clients’ trading strategies and objectives and the regulations that govern them, allowing us to provide practical advice to mitigate compliance and enforcement risks and successfully resolve enforcement matters.


Recent Notable Matters

Repsol North America — development, training and compliance in its commodity marketing and trading business

Shell Energy North America (US), L.P.litigation, held before FERC and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and a settlement filed with FERC over claims for refunds for short-term energy sales that Shell Energy made in the western U.S. markets during the 2000-2001 California energy crisis

Central Maine Power Company, Maine Electric Power Company, New York State Electric & Gas Corporation and Rochester Gas and Electric Corporation — FERC and CFTC compliance and various wholesale power sales, centralized markets, transmission and ratemaking issues at FERC, including transmission formula rate, market-based rate, Order No. 1000 and interconnection matters

Electric utility's power marketing subsidiary — defended against claims of market manipulation, tariff violations, and other fraudulent and deceptive trade practices arising out of the 2000-2001 California Energy Crisis

GDF SUEZ Energy North America, Inc. — successful defense against allegations of market manipulation and associated violations of the Commodity Exchange Act

Shell Energy North America (U.S.) L.P., Avangrid Renewables Holdings, Inc., Madison Gas and Electric Company, EDF Trading North America L.L.C., Northeast Utilities Service Company, American Electric Power Company, Total Gas & Power, Covanta Energy Corporation, Engie (f/k/a GDF SUEZ Energy North America, Inc.), Black Hills, NRG Energy, Inc. and South Jersey Industries, Inc. — comprehensive representation before the CFTC and other regulators in the development of regulations and policies to implement the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act

TransAlta Energy Marketing Corp., GDF SUEZ North America, Inc., Repsol Services Company, Direct Energy, Iberdrola Renewables Holdings, Inc., American Electric Power Company, EverPower Wind Holdings, Inc., Topaz Power Group L.L.C., Phillips 66 and Covanta Energy Corporation — FERC and CFTC power regulatory compliance training sessions; compliance reviews; and regulatory and transactional advice related to major mergers/acquisitions, complex power supply arrangements, tolling agreements, energy management agreements, and other commercial arrangements

Plains All American Pipeline, L.P., Shell Energy North America (U.S.) L.P., Kinder Morgan, Inc., MarkWest Energy GP, L.L.C., Apache Corporation, Targa Resources Partners L.P., SouthStar Energy Services L.L.C., Freeport-McMoRan Oil & Gas L.L.C. and Enterprise Products Operating, L.L.C. — comprehensive Dodd-Frank, futures and derivatives regulatory advice, including all aspects of Dodd-Frank swap regulation

Large, multinational companies — extraterritorial investigations conducted by the CFTC, including addressing jurisdictional questions and protocols under international memoranda of understanding

Major exploration and production company — negotiating and drafting bilateral agreements with bank counterparties to govern Dodd-Frank compliance for future derivatives transactions

Numerous clients — both registered and unregistered, in investigations and enforcement proceedings conducted by CME Group and ICE Futures U.S., including investigations into allegations of position limit violations, non-bona fide prearranged trades (exchange for related positions and block trades), fictitious and wash trades, fraud, market manipulation, and disruptive trade practices

Numerous clients — non-public, CFTC and FERC investigations surrounding allegations of wash and fictitious trades, position limit violations, and market manipulation, including responding to data requests, defending depositions, responding to CFTC Wells notices and FERC preliminary conclusions and settlement negotiations

Public utilities (including merchant generation companies), natural gas trading clients, and power traders — inquiries from both FERC and the CFTC, including conducting internal reviews, drafting self-reports, communicating with FERC and CFTC staff, defending depositions, and negotiating settlements


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The Commodity Futures Trading Commission Guidance

May 20, 2020
Energy Legal Blog®

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC” or “Commission”) Division of Enforcement (“Division”) today issued “Civil Monetary Penalty Guidance” regarding factors staff will consider when recommending civil monetary penalties to the Commission.  The guidance tracks with prior guidance and current practices but...

Tips for Trading Compliance During a Pandemic

March 16, 2020
Energy Legal Blog®

As many workplaces shutter and transition to telecommuting in response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), we are reminded that change always brings with it compliance risk. Even if your company has an emergency plan in place, assessing its effectiveness early and making adjustments as needed can avoid lapses in compliance...

An Autumn Gleaning: Insights from October 2019 decisions in Kraft Foods, Vitol Manipulation Cases

October 28, 2019
Energy Legal Blog®

For those interested in the contours of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) anti-manipulation authority, three October 2019 decisions...

CFTC v. Kraft Dispute Continues with CFTC on Defensive

August 20, 2019
Energy Legal Blog®

Following the August 15 2019 public announcement of a settlement between the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and Kraft Foods Group, Inc./Mondelez Global, LLC (together “Kraft”), the parties appeared on August 19 before the Honorable John Robert Blakey...

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