A four-year investigation into possible manipulation of the silver market looks likely to be dropped by U.S. regulators, the Financial Times reported on Monday, although a U.S. official said a decision is only expected by October.
The newspaper cited three people familiar with the situation as saying the regulator failed to find enough evidence to support a legal case.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission announced that it was investigating "complaints of misconduct in the silver market" in September 2008, following a barrage of allegations of manipulation from a group of precious metals investors.
"While we have not acted on our silver investigation, I am hopeful and expect the commission to do so in September or October," Bart Chilton, a CFTC commissioner, told Reuters in an emailed response to the FT report.
"I continue to believe, consistent with my previous statements and information from the public, that there have been devious efforts related to moving the price of silver. There have also been silver and gold market anomalies outside of the silver investigative window that have raised and continue to raise market concerns."
The CFTC's five commissioners have not yet formally determined the outcome of the investigation but may drop the case because it doesn't have sufficient evidence, according to people familiar with the situation, cited by the FT.
"The investigation has not reached its conclusion," a CFTC spokesman was quoted as saying by the newspaper.