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Stories of Interest
- North Korean caught secretly mining bitcoin rival
- IPO Timelines Cut by 80% After SEC's Private Filing Decision
- How the Carried Interest Break Survived the Tax Bill
- FINRA: The Neutral Corner
- Coinbasex Says Buying and Selling Temporarily Disabled Amid Price Rout
- Bitcoin plunges by more than a third in a single day
- Goldman Is Setting Up a Cryptocurrency Trading Desk
- Jefferies Lets Employees Choose When to Receive Their Bonuses
- UBS Told to Pay $903K After Losing Retaliation Verdict
- BEWARE: Long Island Iced Tea Shares Soar After Changing Name to Long Blockchain
- Gary Cohn’s Last Laugh: Cashing Out on Trump’s Tax Plan
- E*Trade Lets Customers Trade in CBOE Bitcoin Futures
- Swiss Find Serious Shortcomings at JPMorgan in 1MDB Case
- Washington-based Investment Adviser and His Business Partner Charged in Multi-Million Dollar Scheme
- FINRA Board of Governors Meeting
- Cryptocurrency Market Now Doing Same Daily Volume as the NYSE
- Jailed Barclays Trader Must Pay $400,000 From Libor Profits
- Trump Asks ‘How’s Your 401(k)?’ But Most Voters Don’t Have One
- A Bitcoin Hedge Fund’s Return: 25,004% (That Wasn’t a Typo)
- Madoff Victims Near Full Recovery of Principal With Payout
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NEWSLETTERS & ALERTS
SEC Enforcement: Priorities for 2017
[Photos: SEC Enforcement Co-Directors Stephanie Avakian and Steve Peikin]
The SEC Enforcement Division highlighted its regulatory priorities for the coming year which, according to Co-Directors Stephanie Avakian and Steven Peikin, entail the following enforcement approach: “Vigorous enforcement of the federal securities laws is critical to combat wrongdoing, compensate harmed investors, and maintain confidence in the integrity and fairness of our markets.”
ENFORCEMENT DIVISION’S 5 CORE PRINCIPLES. The allocation of the Division’s resources with be driven by these 5 principles:
Principle 1: Focus on the Main Street Investor
Principle 2: Focus on Individual Accountability. *
Principle 3: Keep Pace with Technological Change.
Principle 4: Impose Sanctions that Most Effectively Further Enforcement Goals.
Principle 5: Constantly Assess
Note * While the SEC pursues misconduct by both institutions and individuals, individual accountability is more effective way to deter wrongdoing. The vigorous pursuit of individual wrongdoers must be the key feature of any effective enforcement program.
ENFORCEMENT DIVISION’S INITIATIVES. To more closely align its allocation of resources with 2 key priorities – protecting retail investors, and combating cyber-related threats - the Division has created a Cyber Unit and a Retail Strategy Task Force.
THE CYBER UNIT: The Cyber Unit, which combines Enforcement's substantial, existing cyber-related expertise and its proficiency in digital ledger technology, initially will focus its efforts on the following key areas:
- Market manipulation schemes involving false information spread through electronic and social media;
- Hacking to obtain material nonpublic information and trading on that information;
- Violations involving distributed ledger technology and initial coin offerings (ICOs);
- Misconduct perpetrated using the dark web;
- Intrusions into retail brokerage accounts; and
- Cyber-related threats to trading platforms and other critical market infrastructure.
THE RETAIL STRATEGY TASK FORCE: The Task Force will be dedicated to developing effective strategies and methods to identify potential harm to retail investors. It is focused, in particular, on harnessing the Commission’s ability to use technology and data analytics to identify large-scale wrongdoing. The Task Force also works closely with OCIE to identify areas of risk to retail investors, and with the Commission’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy to educate retail investors about those risks.
The Task Force will focus on:
- wrongdoing implicating the microcap market, as well as Ponzi schemes and offering frauds, where victims typically are retail investors.
- misconduct occurring at the intersection of investment professionals and retail investors – for example:
► steering clients to higher-cost mutual fund share classes;
► abuses in wrap-fee accounts;
► IA recommendations to buy and hold highly volatile products, suitability issues involving the sale of structured products to retail investors,; and,
► abusive sales practices such as churning and excessive trading.