The Sterner, Stricter SEC

As Mary Jo White sees it, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s job is to patrol Wall Street and Main Street and catch financial fraudsters. Since becoming the agency’s chair in April 2013, White, a former federal prosecutor and defense attorney, has repeatedly stressed that the agency will get tougher on financial crime and that, as she said in October 2013, “the SEC is, in very important part, a law enforcement agency.” For some CFOs, that characterization conforms exactly with how they think of the 80-year-old securities regulator. But it’s “not the way the SEC thought of itself in years past,” says Stephen Crimmins, a former senior SEC enforcement official and now a partner at K&L Gates. “It thought of itself as a regulator that also did very important enforcement work. But increasingly, over the last 10 or 20 years, we’ve seen a much greater focus on enforcement as part of the SEC’s program.” More on CFO.com here.

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