Controls Over Export Sales Reporting and Futures Trading Ensure Fairness, Integrity, and Pricing Efficiency in U.S. Grain Marketing

RCED-85-20: Published: Apr 9, 1985. Publicly Released: Apr 11, 1985.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO examined certain controls designed to help ensure that grain trading is done fairly and that the financial and economic integrity of the marketplace is protected. GAO also investigated how efficiently information about grain export sales by U.S. exporters has transformed into changes in grain prices.

GAO found that current controls established by the Department of Agriculture, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and private industry over export sales reporting and certain aspects of futures trading help ensure fairness and soundness in the U.S. grain marketing system. However, continued rapid expansion in grain marketing and related futures markets needs monitoring to ensure that regulatory staffs keep up with the work load. The examination of the relationship between grain futures prices and export sales produced little information that the grain markets were inefficient in transforming reported sales information into price changes.

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