Commodities Futures Trading Comm'n v. Monex Deposit Co., No. 15-1467 (7th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission regulates contracts concerning commodities for future delivery when offered on margin or another form of leverage, 7 U.S.C. 2(c)(2)(D), with an exception for contracts that “results in actual delivery within 28 days or such other longer period as the Commission may determine by rule or regulation based upon the typical commercial practice in cash or spot markets for the commodity involved”. The CFTC began investigating whether Monex's precious-metals business was within this exception. Monex refused to comply with a subpoena, arguing that since 1987, when it adopted its current business model, the CFTC has deemed its business to be in compliance with all federal rules and that, because it satisfies the exception, the Commission lacked authority even to investigate. The district court enforced the subpoena. Monex turned over the documents. Monex appealed, seeking their return and an injunction to prevent the CFTC from using them in any enforcement proceeding. The Seventh Circuit affirmed, stating that Monex was impermissibly using its opposition to the subpoena to get a judicial decision on the merits of its statutory argument, before the CFTC makes a substantive decision. The propriety of an agency’s action is reviewed after the final administrative decision. Contesting the agency’s jurisdiction does not change the rules for determining when a subpoena must be enforced.