Spoofing typically involves flooding derivatives markets with orders that traders don’t intend to execute to trick others into moving prices in a desired direction. The practice has become a focus for prosecutors and regulators in recent years after lawmakers specifically prohibited it in 2010.
Cracking down on spoofing has been a priority for prosecutors and the regulators since Congress outlawed it through the Dodd-Frank Act. Authorities are concerned that the practice has proliferated in the era of electronic trading, with market participants using computer algorithms to submit a high number of bogus orders. A court ruling last year paved the way for prosecutors to scrutinize trading going back a decade.