September 17, 2012 / 7:52 PM / 5 years ago

U.S. CFTC in contact with exchanges over oil price plunge

WASHINGTON, Sept 17 (Reuters) - A top regulator at the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission said the agency is in contact with futures exchanges CME and IntercontinentalExchange Inc over a brief $5 plunge in oil prices on Monday afternoon.

"Our people are aware of it. They are in contact with CME and ICE and are going to get to the bottom of it," Commissioner Scott O'Malia told Reuters.

Brent prices sank more than $5 a barrel on Monday a few minutes before 2 p.m. EDT (1800 GMT) as trading volumes - which had been muted by the Rosh Hashana holiday - shot up.

It was not immediately clear what caused the crash, but traders said it could have resulted from a problem with a computer trading program.

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