activism business corporate responsibility

Join the campaign to end food speculation

Following monday’s posts on commodity speculation, I’ve done a little searching to see who else is campaigning on the issue. I was pleased to find that the World Development Movement is on the case, and the homepage for the campaign is here.

Apparently there is talk from the Obama administration about re-regulating the commodities markets, and introducing more transparency through a regulated exchange. The EU is supportive of the idea, which leaves the UK as the main obstacle. There is a powerful banking lobby in the UK, and the government will have to resist its natural inclination to side with the banks.

At the moment the campaign is targeting Goldman Sachs, who run a $60 billion commodity index, making one them one of the big players in this particular branch of finance. Deutche Bank, HSBC, JP Morgan, Citibank, Morgan Stanley and Bank of America are also involved.

Commodity speculation is a distinctly predatory practice. It needs to be reigned in, like vulture funds were just a couple of months ago. Like much of the world of finance, it is obscure and slightly technical, and doesn’t get the attention from the public that it deserves. I’m going to be getting involved in the campaign. If you’d like to join me, you can start by signing up to be part of a week of phone calls here.

American readers, you guys are ahead of us with the passing of the recent financial reform bill, but it contains a number of exceptions and won’t put an end to the practice completely. Food First have a form letter to send to your representative here.

Find out more:

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