Deutsche commodities fund loses CFTC exemption – MarketWatch

By Laura Mandaro & John Spence, MarketWatch

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — The Commodity Futures Trading Commission said Wednesday that a Deutsche Bank commodities fund and a second, unnamed commodities investor could no longer avoid federal limits on speculating in grain futures.

The decision comes as the futures regulator, under pressure by lawmakers to reduce speculative trading in energy and other commodities, considers making it tougher for financial institutions, index funds and exchange-traded funds to build big positions in the futures markets.

The CFTC said it was withdrawing a May 2006 no-action letter issued to DB Commodity Services, a unit of Germany’s Deutsche Bank (DB)(DE:DBK ), that allowed its DB Commodity Index Tracking Master Fund (DBC) to exceed speculative limits on corn and wheat futures.

The DB Commodity Index fund and sister fund Powershares DB Agriculture Fund (DBA) each told the Securities and Exchange Commission Tuesday it would be "revising its relevant procedures accordingly" in light of the position limits, which go into effect Oct. 31.

Deutsche Bank spokeswoman Renee Calabro declined to comment further.