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Agriculture and Food in the 21 st Century

Economic, Environmental and Social Challenges- Festschrift on the Occasion of Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. P. Michael Schmitz 65 th Birthday

Edited By Monika Hartmann and Joachim Hesse

This Festschrift in honour of Professor Dr. Dr. h.c. P. Michael Schmitz covers theoretical as well as empirical works on challenges prevailing in the food and agricultural sector. Discussions of conflicts between social and ecological requests of citizens and market outcomes are provided. The contributors discuss options of policy interventions as well as their limitations. Empirical facts that can contribute to a more evidence based policy formation are also presented. The book itself consists of two parts: «agri-food markets and policies» and «agriculture, trade and development». Topics covered are moral, markets and policies, farm animal welfare, fat taxes, agricultural derivatives markets, future food value chains, free trade agreements, food security, food waste and climate change.
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Regulation of Agricultural Derivatives Markets: Michaela Kuhl

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Michaela KUHL

Abstract

In view of the instability due to the international financial crisis, European politics has set itself the goal to increase transparency and to strengthen regulation in derivatives markets. This also applies to transactions in agricultural derivatives, despite numerous international studies having found no consensus on the effect of such transactions on the level and volatility of agricultural prices. By the autumn of 2013, many legal steps have already been taken towards a stricter regulation. Many regulations are however still in the process of legislation. The implementation of these measures will take even longer.

Introduction

Since the beginning of the financial crisis, which began with the collapse of Lehman Brothers, debate has flourished on efficient regulation of the financial markets, and how a similar crisis can be avoided in the future. Until the first half of 2008, the prices of many agricultural commodities, as well as oil prices, exploded almost simultaneously, and in several countries led to massive protests of consumers suffering from more expensive staple foods. On the agricultural markets more attention was drawn to the impact of the sharp increase in market participation of financial investors, the so-called “financialization” of commodity markets. In the public, voices were quickly heard, who demanded, like a number of non-governmental organizations, a limitation or prohibition of speculative activities on the exchanges. From the beginning, there were also individuals and institutions warning against over-hasty conclusions and throwing the baby out with the bath...

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