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Avoiding the Obvious

A new interview by James McDonald, Director of Enforcement for the U.S. Commodity Future Trading Commission (CFTC), on Friday makes it clear that neither he nor the Commission has any intent to address the obvious manipulation of the silver market, conducted principally by JPMorgan.  As a reminder, preventing manipulation is the primary mission of the CFTC.   click on podcast April 20, 2018

What you’ll hear is a self-congratulatory review of what a great job the agency is doing in terms of market manipulation in precious metals and how the agency welcomes and takes very serious and always follows up on all allegations to the fullest extent; even offering multi-million dollar rewards under its whistleblower program.

McDonald acknowledged that the agency has received more public complaints on precious metals manipulation (silver specifically) than on any other market and wished to assure the public that the CFTC was diligently protecting it from the evils of price manipulation. It’s true the agency has brought many more cases involving spoofing and other fraudulent acts and for that both McDonald and the Commission should be commended. But both are avoiding the 800 pound gorilla of silver manipulation and JPMorgan standing right in front of them.

So rather than a public interview offering the general assurance that everything is on the up and up in COMEX silver, why not just address the specific issues that have caused so many to believe otherwise? Those issues include excessive speculation on the COMEX, JPMorgan’s perfect trading record and its massive accumulation of physical silver.  Why not just pick up the phone and explain to me why I am wrong in my allegations? Or just hit “reply” to any of my more than 100 emails explaining the COMEX scam?   That would seem to be the most expedient course of action.

The truth is that no one from the agency has ever inquired, followed up on or challenged any of my allegations. That’s because all my allegations are based upon the agency’s own public data. One would think that this presented a perfect opportunity for the CFTC to prove me wrong and end the allegations of manipulation in silver which, clearly, aren’t going away. Should you choose to encourage the agency to resolve this issue once and for all, I’ve enclosed a letter from Jim Cook, president of IRI, Inc., that he has allowed me to offer as a template.

Ted Butler

April 23, 2018

James McDonald

Chairman Giancarlo

Commissioner Quintenz

Commissioner Behnam

Dear Director McDonald,

I listened to your recent interview on the CFTC podcast. You claim to always respond to questions. This seems disingenuous. You have never responded to claims that JPMorgan has suppressed the price of silver in the futures market while accumulating a large amount of physical silver. Nor have you ever tried to explain how JPMorgan has never taken a loss in silver futures trading but always enjoyed large profits, something that’s impossible in a free market.

Surely you are aware of the enormous increase in commentary on these subjects on the Internet and elsewhere. This groundswell is based on your own CFTC data. You, of course, know that Mr. Butler has written to your agency for years raising the above issues and others regarding the silver market. Why can’t you address these issues? Why does JPMorgan appear to have carte blanche freedom to do whatever it chooses?

It would be a tremendous relief to many thousands of silver producers and silver investors to have you respond to these issues. You are highly regarded and have a reputation for unblemished integrity. Consequently, I am asking you to respond to these questions which are the central issue in the silver market.


James R. Cook


Investment Rarities Inc.



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