But Futures Industry Association President Walter Lukken says the drop also owes something to the impact of MF Global.
"It certainly adds to the uncertainty," Lukken told Reuters. "Trust is lost in a moment; it takes a long time to gain it back."
Scott Gara, who says he lost about $630,000 after MF Global's collapse, is not waiting for trust's return.
He shut down his trading firm, and sold his CME seat and shares this past summer.
"I lost all faith in the CME," said Gara, a soybean meal trader who has bought and sold futures for more than 30 years. The CME was MF Global's front-line regulator.
"It's not worth it to me, the risk," Gara said.
This week, as thousands of futures industry leaders and traders gather in Chicago for an annual conference, the NFA and CME Group plan to announce yet another safeguard: automated checks on brokerage's bank balances.
The checks are a response to the July failure of another futures brokerage, Peregrine Financial Group, whose CEO had used fake bank statements to run a 20-year fraud that cost customers $200 million.
The new system will automatically flag any discrepancies between actual customer account balances and the balances reported by brokerages to regulators, and will be in place by the end of this year, NFA president Dan Roth told Reuters in an interview.
The NFA on Thursday will also start reporting new financial data on brokerages, including how they invest customer money.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission last week published a 413-page proposal for new customer protections, including some rules that have already been put in place by CME and the NFA.
But those plans have a "gaping hole," according to CFTC Commissioner Bart Chilton: unlike securities traders, futures traders are not backed by an insurance fund. Chilton has been pushing such a fund, which he says has gotten some traction with lawmakers.
With the Presidential election looming, nothing will happen this year, he said, "But I'm hopeful we get to January, February, and something gets introduced."
To James Koutoulas, who heads the Commodity Customer Coalition and worked closely with the MF Global bankruptcy trustee to get money released to customers faster, new rules are not the answer.
"Enforcement is what makes people safe," Koutoulas said. "You can have all the laws and regs and rules that you want and they don't mean anything if people don't go to jail for theft."
Peregrine CEO Russell Wasendorf confessed to cheating customers and is in jail awaiting sentencing that could keep him behind bars for the rest of his life.