FTC plans public workshop on its proposed petroleum market manipulation rule

The Federal Trade Commission will hold a workshop on its upcoming petroleum industry market manipulation rulemaking at its Washington headquarters on Nov. 6 from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Nov. 6: The Federal Trade Commission will hold a workshop on its upcoming petroleum industry market manipulation rulemaking in Room 432 of its Washington headquarters at Sixth Street and Pennsylvania Ave., NW from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. The workshop is open to the public. Pre-registration is not required, but attendees will need to present valid photo identification for admission to the building. The conference room will open at 8:45 a.m. A live webcast will be available.

Why it matters: It will be an opportunity for public discussion of the commission's proposed rule prohibiting market manipulation in the petroleum industry. One of the main topics will be the element of "scienter," which the US Supreme Court defined as "a mental state embracing intent to deceive, manipulate and defraud" in a 1976 decision, Ernst & Ernst vs. Hochfelder. The proposed rule includes a recklessness standard to satisfy the scienter element.

Other likely topics include the proposed rule's basis, contours and appropriate reach; whether the FTC should use Securities and Exchange Commission Rule 10b-5 as a model for its market manipulation rule; conduct which would violate an FTC rule, and the FTC's decision not to require a showing of price effects in order to establish a violation of the proposed rule.

The FTC will conduct the workshop as a moderated roundtable discussion with panelist who submitted comments on the proposed rule and expressed interest in participating. It said that views expressed at this workshop, along with previously submitted comments, will be considered in determining whether a rule prohibiting market manipulation in the petroleum industry should be developed, and if so, what the format and content of the rule should be.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com

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