One of the few good things to come out of the MF Global and PFG scandals in the futures industry was a renewed interest in good people trying to get involved with the National Futures Association at the Board of Director level – (the other would be the various customer protections since put in place).
Two such good eggs are Doug Bry and Ernest Jaffarian, who were concerned enough about the industry response to MF Global that they petitioned to get placed on the ballot for NFA Director to do something about it (before that, nobody had ever been elected via such petition – since that, James Koutoulas, John Roe, and Attain’s own Jeff Malec were all elected via petition).
Well, they’re now facing a contested election, and we at Attain would like to see them continue the efforts and work that are underway to bring needed reforms to NFA.
Doug and Ernest are owners of dedicated futures firms running against two lawyers from hedge fund giants AQR and Citadel. Don’t get us wrong, the two contenders are extremely well qualified – nearly to the point of being over qualified. But being a registered CTA and CPO ourselves – We would rather have the people who do 100% futures and whose main business lines are running a CTA and CPO, than the people who do futures as just a part of a global investment company empire. It also occurs to us that the AQRs and Citadels of the world will make their mark on the futures industry whether in this role or not. AQR’s rep is heavily involved with the Managed Funds Association, for example.
So our recommendation is to go with the guys who’ve been there on the job for the past two years, and who have gained some momentum in the role. Our recommendation is to vote for Douglas Bry and Ernest Jaffarian. But more than anything, please take the time to vote for your representative to the NFA Board of Directors. You don’t get to complain about the regulations if you don’t vote!