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NFA Board approves Fiscal Year 2004 budget

NFA has budgeted $29.7 million for administrative spending in Fiscal Year 2004. The budget, approved by NFA's Board of Directors in May, reflects a 3.8 percent increase over the previous year's spending. NFA's fiscal year runs from July 1 through June 30.

"We take great pride in our fiscal responsibility," said NFA's Treasurer David Hawrysz. "Although the 3.8 percent increase is greater than NFA's annual average of 2.3 percent, our 2004 spending levels are budgeted to come in below Fiscal Year 2000 actual spending levels."

Much of the spending increase for 2004 is related to wages and employee benefits. Over the past year, NFA has taken on new responsibilities in the areas of anti-money laundering, forex and commodity pool financial analysis. In order to meet these new responsibilities as efficiently as possible, NFA plans to increase its Compliance staff during the next year.

"In the area of employee benefits, NFA is facing the same healthcare insurance issues as many other companies," said Hawrysz. "We have experienced steep premium increases over the past several years and are proactively seeking ways to restructure our healthcare plan that will be cost-effective both for NFA and its employees."

Revenues are budgeted at $25.3 million, with $16 million (63%) expected to come from the FCM assessment fee. NFA plans to maintain the current assessment fee rate of 6 cents per round-turn futures contract and 3 cents per options contract.

"Public trading volume growth has been extraordinary over the past two years, and our fee reductions reflect that," said Hawrysz. "During the period of July 1, 2001, to June 30, 2003, NFA reduced its assessment fee five times, or 66 percent."

Hawrysz added that NFA staff and the Finance Committee will monitor trading volume throughout the year and make additional assessment fee recommendations as warranted.

"When preparing our fiscal year budget, we always strive to sustain the high quality of our programs without placing unnecessary financial burdens on our membership," said Hawrysz. "Our goal is to provide the best possible regulatory programs and services at the best possible price."

NFA is the premier independent provider of efficient and innovative regulatory programs that safeguard the integrity of the derivatives markets.
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