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Thought I should pass along these excellent articles on commodities speculation and food prices. Thankfully, this issue seems to be gaining more and more traction as of late.
The Egyptian Tinderbox: How Banks and Investors are Starving the Third World, by Ellen Brown, truthout, Feb 2011
How Goldman Sachs gambled on starving the worlds’ poor – and won, from Johann Hari (the Independent), July 2010
There’s also a few groups out there doing some organizing around these issues. This is one of the most comprehensive sites I’ve seen so far – including a fledgling divestment campaign to educate institutional investors on the dubious ethics (and financial pitfalls) of commodities index funds.
As part of the financial reform bill passed last summer, the CFTC recently proposed position limits for commodities (as well as some other rules; see a factsheet here and a Q&A here; prepare to glaze over). The agency is currently taking public comment on those rules, if we can only figure out what to comment on and what to say before April. I have yet to see a specific critique of what sort of changes might be warranted, seems like folks might still be figuring that out. If you have any guidance on this or links that would help, post it in the comments…
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