Blythe Masters, head of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)'s commodities division, is joining an advisory committee of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, said Steve Adamske, a spokesman for the regulator.
Masters, 44, was invited by acting Chairman Mark Wetjen to sit on a global markets committee at the Washington-based regulator of futures and swaps, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. Masters is scheduled to participate in a CFTC meeting on Feb. 12 to discuss cross-border guidance on rules, the person said.
JPMorgan, the biggest U.S. bank, is selling the part of its commodities division dealing in physical assets, such as metals and oil, as regulators examine whether federally backed lenders should be involved in those markets. Masters probably wouldn't join Mercuria Energy Group Ltd., which is in exclusive talks for the unit, a person with knowledge of the auction said this week.
The CFTC has been enacting rules required by the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act designed to reduce risk and increase transparency in the global swaps market, after some firms' bets on the derivatives helped fuel the 2008 credit crisis. The agency put in place more than 60 rules seeking to have most swaps guaranteed at central clearinghouses, which accept collateral from buyers and sellers, and traded on execution facilities or other exchanges.
Masters joined JPMorgan in 1991 after internships at the firm and became known that decade for helping develop credit-default swaps, which help investors hedge risks on bonds. She was named to run the commodities business in late 2006, and she also heads regulatory affairs within JPMorgan's corporate and investment bank.
JPMorgan agreed in July to pay $410 million to settle Federal Energy Regulatory Commission claims the New York-based firm manipulated power markets. The settlement released the company and its employees from any future enforcement actions by the agency. Masters, whose division includes the unit involved in that case, wasn't named as a defendant.
The global markets committee is made up of industry executives and has included representatives from firms including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. (C)