CFTC chair to step down in 2021

Darren Sinden

It’s a shame that the bipartisan nature of US politics does not allow Mr Tarbet to remain in situ under the Biden presidency, as he won’t easily be replaced.

Reg SCI rules by SEC addressed in new Exegy Inc. package

The chair of the US Commodities Futures Trading Commission or CFTC is to step down in January when Joe Biden becomes President.

Heath Tarbet is staunch Republican and took up his post in July 2019 and will have served around 18 months when he symbolically resigns next month.

A change of administration in the USA often means that senior posts are reallocated by the incoming government, though Mr Tarbet’s record at the CFTC might have been thought sufficient for him to have retained his role, political differences aside.

Speaking about his time at the CFTC Mr Tarbet said that “It has been a great honour to serve the American people as the 14th chairman and chief executive of the CFTC as well as one of the agency’s five commissioners. Leading the men and women of the CFTC these last 17 months has been an extraordinary privilege but, like all good things, it must come to an end,”

Before joining the CFTC in 2019 Mr Tarbet had been policy chair for the US committee on foreign investment in the US, where he served for two years and he had also served as the US executive director at the World Bank.

Mr Tarbet has been a very effective leader at the CFTC, and during his time at the commission, it has drafted and added 40 new rules and 21 new proposals and of course weathered the extreme conditions created by the pandemic. Heath Tarbet described the CFTC’s performance under those conditions as its finest hour.

The Futures Industry Association or FIA expressed its thoughts on the pending departure, stating

“We appreciate the chairman’s response during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, his direct communication with FIA members, and his work to ensure the markets remained liquid and functioning”

“Chairman Tarbert also served with distinction on the international stage, collaborating with counterparts in various jurisdictions to preserve cross-border access to markets for US entities and recently becoming the first CFTC chairman to be named a vice-chair of IOSCO.”

In a period when many appointees made by the Trump administration came in for criticism, Mr Tarbet is an exception and looks to be leaving the CFTC in a stronger position than when he joined.

The regulator’s enforcement division has been particularly active during 2020 issuing a record number of enforcement actions and generating $1.30 billion in penalties.

It’s a shame that the bipartisan nature of US politics does not allow Mr Tarbet to remain in situ under the Biden presidency, as he won’t easily be replaced.

However, at the relatively young age of 44 he no doubt has an exciting career path ahead of him and its unlikely that he will be short of job offers, though they will probably be from the private sector or the legal profession as Mr Tarbet was previously a partner at Allen and Overy.

Read this next

Inside View

Broadridge report finds 27% of firms’ overall IT budget goes to digital transformation

“A new chapter in digital transformation is emerging. In our work with clients across the financial services industry we see leading firms are already reaping the benefits from digitalization and the use of technologies such as AI and blockchain/DLT, as they adapt to economic headwinds and new competitive dynamics”

Executive Moves

Ripple announces Monica Long as President

“I’m incredibly honored to take on the role of President at Ripple as we expand deeper into crypto-enabled services like liquidity, settlement and custody.”

Executive Moves

Arabesque AI appoints Carolina Minio Paluello as CEO

“Arabesque AI is uniquely positioned to service the asset management industry’s need to meet the growing market demand for hyper customised portfolios.”

Industry News

SEC Commissioner Mark T. Uyeda says standardized ESG measures are doomed to fail

“Because ESG ratings may be divorced from matters of financial materiality, they can reflect a particular political or social agenda.”

Industry News

Worldline launches digital payments suite in India

“Our low-cost innovative offering SoftPOS will empower SMBs in a big way to accept digital payments affordably.”


cTrader Web 4.5 Presents Guest Mode, Multiple Charting and Copy Improvements

Spotware has announced the release of its cTrader Web version 4.5, which comes with a whole range of features and improvements for all cTrader users.


SteelEye suggests integrated surveillance as Morgan Stanley fines employees over WhatsApp

“The use of integrated surveillance means firms can avoid unwanted regulatory attention by enabling them to self-report and self-remedy more efficiently when malpractice is flagged.”

Industry News

ASIC bans Gregory William Finerty for unlicensed FX algo trading bot

Bradford AI leased an algorithmic trading program known as ‘Robot 1’ to trade on the FX market, using an Australia-based over the counter contracts for difference (CFD) broker.


With the recent changes to St Vincent licensing, what will the future trends be for licensing in 2023?

New St. Vincent and the Grenadines regulations came as somewhat of a shock for those brokerages that are only regulated in SVG