ATA endorses more oversight of energy futures market

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The American Trucking Associations on Wednesday, June 4, applauded the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission for outlining steps that will increase the transparency of the energy futures market and help to ensure that petroleum prices once again are driven by supply and demand. ATA expressed its endorsement to CFTC through a letter from Bill Graves, ATA president and chief executive officer.

CFTC said it will improve oversight of the energy futures market by expanding the amount and quality of information received from energy traders. Steps include expanding international surveillance information for crude oil trading; increasing the transparency of trading in U.S. energy markets; and continuing CFTC’s ongoing nationwide crude oil investigation.

ATA says it repeatedly has asked the federal government to address the increased speculation in the petroleum futures markets. ATA believes that balancing the need for an efficient petroleum market with the desire to limit petroleum speculation could help burst the bubble that has formed in the petroleum markets.

The dramatic increase in the price of diesel, which has coincided with a downturn in the economy and a softening demand for freight transportation, is hurting trucking companies nationwide. The trucking industry is experiencing the highest prolonged fuel prices in history; today, it can cost more than $1,300 to fuel a tractor-trailer. Because trucks haul nearly all consumer goods, rising fuel costs have the potential to increase the cost of everything transported by truck, including food, retail and manufactured goods.