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Article

Abstract

“Financial markets are like the mirror of mankind. It is not the fault of the mirror if it reflects our blemishes as clearly as our beauty.” With the United States still attempting to recover from a financial crisis brought on, in part, by financial ingenuity and the relatively unforeseen risks emanating from “new” financial products, developing the idea of seafood futures contracts into another product that theoretically could cause market turmoil, may be met with a less than enthusiastic embrace. Although bowing to the urge to disregard the potential benefits for fear of the potential side effects might at first seem the prudent reaction, there are some considerable benefits to creating seafood futures contracts. Such contracts have the potential to influence an increase in seafood consumption and fishermen profitability, while enhancing market efficiency, decreasing waste, and limiting volatile price swings. With so much potential the question must be raised: “Why don’t seafood futures contracts already exist?” The answer is that they do exist, did exist, and, if the economic incentives are realized, could again exist in the United States in the near future. Part II of this Comment reviews forward and futures contracts in the United States and focuses on the creation and use of plywood, shrimp, and salmon futures contracts. Part III of this Comment examines futures contracts under U.S. law. Part IV of this Comment analyzes the potential benefits and drawbacks of seafood futures contracts. Finally, Part V focuses on how seafood futures contracts could be created and implemented.

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