The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) filed an application Monday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, seeking to enforce a subpoena for documents it served on McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. in December 2006 relating to natural gas price information collected from a specific energy company by McGraw-Hill’s Platts division. The CFTC said it was the fourth time it had subpoenaed documents relating to data from various energy companies and their use in calculating price indices published in Platts’ Inside FERC’s Gas Market Reports. The CFTC is conducting a nonpublic investigation into whether an energy company attempted to manipulate prices to benefit its financial swaps positions. In a previous case where Platts objected that the material was privileged under the First Amendment, a judge overruled the privilege argument, saying the CFTC investigation was similar to a criminal investigation. The judge, however, also said the CFTC’s subpoena was overly broad and he limited the amount and nature of the material to be provided (see Daily GPI, Oct. 5, 2005). The CFTC’s investigations mainly have focused on the 2001-2002 time period.
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