Vitol Dismissed From Oil Price Manipulation Suit

On behalf of Vitol Inc. and Vitol S.A., Skadden secured the dismissal of claims alleging violations of the Commodity Exchange Act and antitrust laws brought against the Vitol entities and a number of other oil producers and market participants involved in the trading of Brent crude oil or Brent crude oil futures contracts. The plaintiffs, who sought to represent a class of traders of the futures contracts, alleged that the defendants manipulated the market and conspired to fix the prices of Brent crude oil and futures contracts by conspiring to report inaccurate, misleading and false information to Platts, the entity that publishes benchmark pricing for Brent crude oil. Judge Andrew Carter of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed the complaint because the plaintiffs failed to plausibly allege that the markets in which they participated were directly affected by the alleged manipulation of Brent crude prices or the relative price benchmarks.