Onion Futures Act

Onion Futures Act

Legislation in the United States, passed in 1958, that prohibited the trade of futures contracts on onions. The Act resulted from protests from onion farmers that price manipulation on the futures markets was causing unsustainably low prices, hurting their earnings. The Act represented the first time the United States banned a commodity from trading entirely. Scholars disagree as to whether the Act increased or decreased volatility in the onion market.
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Onion futures became verboten in the late 1950s, when then-congressman Gerald Ford introduced the Onion Futures Act in response to a market crash that followed a couple of enterprising Chicagoans cornering the market.