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Rostin Benham - 15th Chairman of the CFTC

Nov 17, 2023
Rostin Benham - 15th Chairman of the CFTC

Rostin Behnam was sworn in as the 15th Chairman of the CFTC on January 4, 2022, following unanimous confirmation by the U.S. Senate. President Biden appointed Chairman Behnam to head the agency.


Rostin Behnam Biography

Who is Rostin Behnam?

Prior to this, Chairman Behnam served as a Commissioner of the CFTC from September 2017. He was elected by Commission members to serve as Acting Chairman from January 21, 2021. Since joining the CFTC, Chairman Behnam has individually and as a sponsor of the CFTC Market Risk Advisory Committee (MRAC) advocated for the CFTC to use its authority and expertise to ensure transparent and fair operation of the derivatives markets for participants and clients. He has also responsibly implemented innovations to address issues of evolving market structures and products.

Through the sponsorship of MRAC, Chairman Behnam convened leading market experts and public groups to engage in public dialogue on current issues such as global interest rate reform, risks and management of the Central Counterparty (CCP), and emerging market structures.

Behnam led the creation of a Market Risk Subcommittee related to climate to explore the impact of climate on the financial system. One of his first actions as head of the commission was to create the agency's first-ever Climate Risk Unit (CRU) to support the agency's mission. It focused on the role of derivative financial instruments in transitioning to a low-carbon economy. CRU, consisting of staff from CFTC's operational divisions and offices, represents the agency's next step in response to what has become a global call to action against climate change.

Rostin's Career Path

After graduating from university, Behnam returned to his home state of New Jersey and joined the Bureau of Securities in the State Attorney General's office. After working in the Bureau, he practiced law in New York. Chairman Behnam's main responsibilities included advising Senator Stabenow on the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and related issues affecting the Treasury and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

After graduating from Georgetown University, Chairman Behnam worked as a stock trader in New York before earning his Juris Doctor degree from Syracuse University. During his legal studies, he interned in the CFTC's Division of Enforcement.

Description of the CFTC

The mission of the CFTC (Commodity Futures Trading Commission) is to promote the integrity, resilience, and vibrancy of the U.S. derivatives markets through rational regulation. The Commission consists of five commissioners, appointed by the President upon recommendation and with the consent of the Senate, serving staggered five-year terms. The President, with the consent of the Senate, appoints one of the commissioners as the chairperson. No more than three commissioners at the same time may be from the same political party. In the absence of a Senate-confirmed chairperson, the Commission will vote to elect one of the acting commissioners as Acting Chairman. Rostin Behnam is among the commissioners.

R. Behnam's Impact on the World of Cryptocurrency

Rostin Behnam, in his role as Chairman of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), played a significant role in regulating the cryptocurrency market. His impact on the cryptocurrency market can be characterized as follows:

Aspect of Influence Description
Support for Regulation Behnam advocated for strengthening cryptocurrency regulation, contributing to a more transparent and secure market.
Investor Protection Focus on protecting investor interests, enhancing measures against fraud and manipulation in the market.
Improving Regulatory Clarity Call for clarity in cryptocurrency regulation, important for attracting institutional investors and sustainable market development.
Impact on International Regulation Contribution to the development of international standards and approaches to cryptocurrency regulation.
Innovation and Technology Development Emphasis on the importance of supporting innovation while maintaining regulatory control.

Overall, Behnam had a significant impact on shaping the regulatory environment in the field of cryptocurrencies, contributing to their stabilization and development.


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