New SEC Chair May Jo White’s motto “you have to be tough” and plans to toss out the SEC enforcement policy that allowed almost all defendants to settle cases without admitting wrongdoing sound great; but the reality is, as the WSJ reports, the policy shift comes as the SEC turns the page on its financial crisis work. New investigations into misconduct linked to the meltdown have slowed to a trickle. And a statute-of-limitations deadline that generally restricts the sanctions the SEC can get for conduct more than five years old is looming for many cases. The SEC’s crisis-related actions are producing diminishing financial returns as the following charts suggest… As one law professor noted, “they’ve not had the big case that everybody wanted to see… a major player being held really accountable.” Perhaps more reading and less porn would be a start?
Well that’s not good?
and in detail…
In total, the SEC has filed crisis-related enforcement actions against 105 individuals, according to the Journal analysis. The agency has reached settlements with 59 of those people. Six crisis-related cases against individuals by the SEC were later dropped or rejected in court. The SEC has won cases against four individuals, excluding cases where civil charges were filed against a person also convicted of criminal charges.
The SEC hasn’t pursued enforcement actions against several prominent banks that concocted complex debt instruments that unraveled dramatically, dragging down the U.S. economy.