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 FINRA Supervision Rules May Require Immediate Action

The SEC approved FINRA’s major reworking of its rules governing broker-dealers firms’ supervision of their offices and associated persons. Firms must comply with the new rules by December 1, 2014. This may require some firms...more

SEC Continues to Focus on Microcap Fraud

Microcap fraud is a continuing enforcement priority for the SEC. Last week, for example, the Commission brought an action centered on what would have been a pump and dump scheme but for the fact that the shell company was...more

Fair Valuation and Mutual Fund Directors: The Great Valuation Divide and Its Implications

The 1940 Act’s requirements for valuing portfolio securities may be summarized as follows: the board of directors must determine, in good faith, the fair value of every portfolio security for which a market quotation is not...more

Examples of Social Media in M&A Transactions

In April 2014, the SEC provided guidance on the use of social media in M&A and other contexts. Companies have begun to cautiously make use of the guidance but the flood gates haven’t exactly opened....more

Status Updates - July 2014 #8

..The average millennial checks his or her smartphone 45 times a day and learns about news online primarily through Facebook and Twitter, according to a new survey. Search engines and email, the “more traditional” venues,...more

SEC Issues Interpretive Advice About Verification Safe Harbors Under Rule 506(c)

The availability of the private placement exemption under SEC Rule 506 depends in large measure upon determinations that purchasers are “accredited investors” under the rules. Where there is no general solicitation, Rule...more

This Week In Securities Litigation (Week ending July 18, 2014)

The SEC’s insider trading probe regarding the House Ways and Means Committee and a senior staff member, also involves 44 investment funds and other entities, according to a Bloomberg news report citing recently filed court...more

Guidance Provides Path Forward for Accredited Investor Verification

As mandated by Congress in Section 201(a) of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act, in July 2013 the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) amended Rule 506 under Regulation D of the Securities Act of 1933, creating a new...more

U.S. Brokers Doing Business Overseas

Recently, regulators have made inquiries about the lawfulness of U.S. brokerage firms soliciting foreign clients. The regulators want to know under what exemptions or rules U.S. firms can do business overseas. This is a new...more

SEC Adopts First Installment of Rules for Cross-Border Security-Based Swap Activity

On June 25, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) re-started its rulemaking for security-based swaps (SBS) under Title VII of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (the "Dodd-Frank Act")...more

SEC Clarifies Certain Proxy Voting Responsibilities of Investment Advisers and Availability of Exemptions from Proxy Rules for...

On June 30, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Divisions of Investment Management and Corporate Finance released joint guidance to address certain issues regarding proxy voting responsibilities of investment...more

Small SEC Steps Toward a Uniform Fiduciary Standard?

Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White has directed the Commission’s staff to prepare a document that outlines all alternative approaches the SEC could take to proposing fiduciary rules applicable to...more

Supreme Court Protects Whistleblowing Employees of Mutual Fund Adviser

Whistleblowing law continues to develop, with a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision holding that, despite ambiguous statutory language, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 protects employees of private companies serving as...more

Commissioner Piwowar Slams “Dodd-Frank Politburo” for Overstepping Authority

In a speech on July 15, 2014, SEC Commissioner Michael S. Piwowar expressed his views about the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) operating in secrecy as it tries to expand its regulation of financial institutions...more

When is a Consultant an Executive Officer? – SEC Brings Another Case

The SEC has instituted administrative proceedings against a registrant and others alleging that two individuals with prior law violations secretly controlled the operational and management decisions of the registrant while...more

How the MCDC Initiative affects bond issuers and borrowers

If you have ever issued (or borrowed the proceeds of) bonds then you should know about the Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Compliance Initiative (the “Initiative”) and take the appropriate steps to determine your...more

EY Sanctioned For Acting As An Advocate For Audit Clients

Auditor independence is critical. The opinion issued by the audit firm regarding the financial statements of an audit client represents in part that the firm is independent. That judgment is based on an assessment of all the...more

FDA Promises Guidance on Lawful Off-Label Promotion

In June, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (the "FDA") announced that by the end of the year, the agency would issue a draft guidance document addressing the contours of lawful and unlawful off-label promotion. The...more

Swimming in the Deep End: A Primer on Dark Pools

“Dark pools of liquidity” have recently become the focus of increased regulatory scrutiny, including a number of high-profile enforcement actions related to these alternative trading systems. This increased scrutiny follows...more

Deadline Approaching for Disclosure of Continuing Disclosure Violations

The Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) recently launched its Municipalities Continuing Disclosure Cooperation Initiative (the MCDC Initiative). Obligated persons (including issuers and conduit borrowers) and...more

SEC Releases New Guidance on Accredited Investor Determination and Verification

On July 3, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued six new Compliance and Disclosure Interpretations (CDIs) regarding the determination and verification of accredited investor status for purposes of Rule...more

SEC Staff Provides Guidance on Custody Rule Compliance When Private Funds Use SPVs and Escrow Accounts

The staff of the SEC’s Division of Investment Management issued IM Guidance Update No. 2014-7 (the “Guidance Update”) to provide guidance on how Rule 206(4)-2 under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 (the “Custody Rule”)...more

Can You Raise Money From Investors Who Are Not “Accredited Investors”?

A question I receive frequently from entrepreneurs raising capital for the first time is whether they can raise money from people who do not meet the SEC definition of “accredited investors.” The easy answers are “you...more

SEC: The New Cyber-Cop

It seems scarcely a week goes by without a headline blaring news of a major cybersecurity breach. And with ongoing revelations about the data-tracking activities of the National Security Agency, the public isn’t growing less...more

SEC Settles Civil FCPA Action Against Two Former Oil Services Executives

On the eve of a trial which was scheduled to begin this week, the Securities and Exchange Commission settled a civil Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) case it brought against two former oil services executives. The case...more

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