MF Global's missing money traced: report

Wed Feb 1, 2012 2:07am EST

The sign marking the MF Global Holdings Ltd. offices at 52nd Street in midtown Manhattan is seen in New York November 2, 2011. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

The sign marking the MF Global Holdings Ltd. offices at 52nd Street in midtown Manhattan is seen in New York November 2, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Shannon Stapleton

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(Reuters) - U.S. investigating authorities have traced more than 90 percent of the customer money which disappeared from MF Global around the time of its bankruptcy, the New York Times reported, citing people briefed on the investigation.

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the regulator leading the investigation, traced nearly all the money to banks, MF Global's trading partners and the firm's securities customers. The Commission, however, is unsure whether the money can be retrieved, the paper said.

"We understand the frustration of customers, but the CFTC must take the necessary time -- however long it takes -- to get to the bottom of what happened at MF Global and take appropriate actions," the regulator said in a statement to the paper.

In December, Reuters reported U.S. regulators were "far enough along the trail" that they know where the money went, but must sort out which transactions were legitimate before more money can be released to customers.

MF Global filed for bankruptcy on October 31 after investors and customers became rattled over its $6.3 billion bet on European sovereign debt.

(Reporting by Sruthi Ramakrishnan in Bangalore; Editing by Dan Lalor)

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