Securities & Exchange Commission

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission was created in 1934 in response to the Great Stock Market Crash of 1929. The Commission was created to protect investors, ensure fairness in the market, and... more +
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission was created in 1934 in response to the Great Stock Market Crash of 1929. The Commission was created to protect investors, ensure fairness in the market, and encourage capital formation. The Commission is headed by five presidentially-appointed Commissioners who oversee the Commission’s five divisions: Division of Corporation Finance, Division of Trading and Markets, Division of Enforcement, Division of Investment Management, and the Division of Risk, Strategy and Financial Information.  less -
News & Analysis as of

New Five Business Day Timeline for Debt Tender or Exchange Offers

On January 23, 2015, the Staff of the US Securities and Exchange Commission issued a no-action letter (the “No-Action Letter”) providing that it would not recommend enforcement action with respect to a five business day...more

"United Kingdom: The SFO Focuses on Corporate Fraud and Corruption"

Once the subject of speculation regarding its possible consolidation with other agencies, the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) had an exceedingly busy 2014, with all signs suggesting that it will continue its aggressive enforcement...more

Securities Enforcement 2014 Year-End Review

Fiscal year 2014 proved to be another eventful and record-breaking year for the Division of Enforcement (Enforcement Division) of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or the Commission). Indeed, the...more

Private Equity: SEC Custody Rule—One Size Does Not Fit All

As a result of the Dodd-Frank Act, since 2012 investment advisers that operate pooled investment vehicles such as hedge funds and private equity funds with $150 million of assets under management became subject to the...more

Governance & Securities Law Focus: Asia Edition, January 2015

In this issue: - Japan Releases Exposure Draft of New Corporate Governance Code - Launch of Shanghai-Hong Kong Stock Connect - SEC and NYSE Developments - Noteworthy US Securities Law Litigation...more

SEC Staff Will No Longer Issue No-Action Letters on Conflicting Shareholder Proposals During the 2015 Proxy Season

The staff of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Corporation Finance (the “SEC Staff”) recently announced that it would refuse to grant no-action relief during the 2015 proxy season to companies seeking...more

Welcome to COSO and the World of Internal Controls – Part I

I have intentionally avoided a Top Five or Top Ten prediction list for Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement going forward from 2014 into 2015. However there is one area of FCPA enforcement, which I think underwent...more

PCAOB Alerts on Deficiencies in Broker-Deal Audits

The first five inspections of broker-dealer audit and new attestation engagements subject to PCAOB standards show deficiencies in the auditors’ application of these standards according to the PCAOB. The requirement to...more

Two Governmental Regulators Highlight Cybersecurity Issues In 2015 Priorities

It is no surprise that numerous government regulators have listed cybersecurity amongst their priorities for 2015. This past week, two of these regulators – the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Office for Civil...more

Oppenheimer Settles with SEC, FinCEN

Oppenheimer & Co., Inc. settled an action with the SEC centered on violations of the broker registration provisions, a failure to file suspicious activity reports or SARS and the sale of unregistered penny stock shares. The...more

Lessons Learned: Report All Potential D&O Liability Insurance Claims Without Delay

The District Court of Massachusetts’ January 6, 2015 opinion in Biochemics, Inc. v. Axis Reinsurance Co., 2015 WL 71493 (D. Mass. Jan. 6, 2015), reaffirms the importance of providing timely notice of all D&O liability claims...more

Federal Prosecutors Charge Canadian Trader in “Layering” Scheme

The US Attorney for the District of New Jersey recently filed criminal securities and wire fraud charges against a Canadian man, Aleksandr Milrud, alleging that he engaged in a fraudulent scheme to manipulate the stock...more

SEC Grants Second Bad Actor Waiver With Conditions

SEC Commissioner Kara Stein recently described what many saw as a possible model for harsher bad actor waivers after settling a matter with the SEC. According to Ms. Stein “The waiver was for a limited time, and only if...more

Shorter Tender Offer Period Permitted for Certain Securities

The SEC recently issued a no-action letter that significantly expands the scope of securities that are eligible for an abbreviated tender offer process. The SEC’s new position should allow for issuers to restructure their...more

Massachusetts Adopts Intrastate Crowdfunding Rules, Effective Immediately

The Massachusetts Securities Division has recently joined a number of other states in adopting a “crowdfunding” exemption from securities registration requirements for certain offerings made within the Commonwealth, with the...more

Bitcoin – The Ever “Curiouser and Curiouser” Bitcoin Wonderland – Part Eleven

“Virtual currencies” in general, and bitcoin in particular, continue to attract media attention as well as intense public and regulatory scrutiny. In the United States, the recent establishment of the Digital Currency...more

Second Circuit Notes Split with Ninth Circuit Over Whether Failure to Make Adequate Disclosures Under Item 303 of Regulation S-K...

In Stratte-McClure v. Morgan Stanley, No. 13-0627-cv, 2015 WL 136213 (2d Cir. Jan. 12, 2015), the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the dismissal of securities fraud claims against Morgan Stanley...more

Earnings Call Practices: How Does Your Company Compare to Others?

Results from the 2014 Earnings Call Practices Survey conducted by the National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI), a professional association of corporate officers and investor relations consultants, confirm that an...more

FinCEN Again Extends Deadline for Certain FBAR Filers

Certain individuals who have only signature authority over foreign financial accounts now have until June 30, 2016 to file the Report of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts....more

SEC Files Prime Bank Fraud and Offering Fraud Actions as Administrative Proceedings

The trend of selecting administrative proceedings rather than Federal court by the SEC appears to be continuing. Since last September, for example, the SEC has filed at least seven insider trading cases as administrative...more

State Of The Union “Sneak Peek” Highlights Administration Cybersecurity Initiatives

As part of a series of “sneak peeks” announced in advance of the State of the Union address on Tuesday, January 20th, President Obama made remarks last week before the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of Homeland...more

SEC Comments on FINRA’s Proposed Rule Amendment to Increase Pricing Disclosure

On January 20, the Securities and Exchange Commission commented on the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s proposed amendment to FINRA Rule 2232 regarding transparency on prices in certain retail transactions in...more

SEC Chair Directs Staff to Review Commission Rule Excluding Conflicting Proxy Proposals

On January 16, Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White announced that she has directed the SEC’s staff (Staff) to review Rule 14a-8(i)(9) promulgated under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, which allows an...more

First Reg A Issuer to Complete State Review Process Would Do It Again

This Growth Capital Investor article references Smith Anderson attorneys Benji Jones and Merrill Mason. A company that focuses on micro-lending for independent builders in real estate is now the first Reg A issuer to...more

The SEC Totally Cares about Its Injunctions

Last week I wrote a post discussing the injunctions the SEC typically obtains against defendants in federal court. I noted the oddity of these obey-the-law injunctions and wondered aloud why the Commission never pursues...more

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