The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) on Friday announced the award of approximately $3 million to a whistleblower whose information led to a successful enforcement action.
The payout is the first announced by the CFTC under its whistleblower program since a $250,000 bounty issued in September 2020. The last time the CFTC announced an award of over $1 million was July 2020.
Like its counterpart at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the CFTC’s whistleblower program is scant on providing details in order to maintain the anonymity of tipsters. In the case of Friday’s award, the whistleblower voluntarily provided original information regarding potential violations of the Commodity Exchange Act that prompted the start of an investigation.
Two other claimants tried to get a share of the award but were denied. The CFTC redacted the explanation for this decision.
While CFTC whistleblower awards have been few and far between over the last year, the SEC’s program has been running full steam. The SEC on Friday announced two awards of its own worth approximately $3.3 million to run its total for fiscal year 2021 to approximately $254 million on 47 payouts. The fiscal year started in October.
The CFTC has awarded approximately $123 million since issuing its first whistleblower bounty in 2014. With Friday’s announcement, the agency’s program has been associated with more than $1 billion in monetary sanctions issued via CFTC enforcement actions.
“This milestone illustrates that the CFTC’s Whistleblower Program has had a tremendous impact on increasing our enforcement efforts in its short history,” said Acting Director of Enforcement Vincent McGonagle in a press release.
Whistleblowers are eligible to receive between 10 and 30 percent of monetary sanctions collected.