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Alternative Market Briefing

SEC enforcement actions top $3.4 billion in 2013

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Bailey McCann, Opalesque New York:

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has released a new report showing the totality of its enforcement efforts over the year. The final figure of fines collected for enforcement actions is an historic $3.4bn, bolstered by large individual settlements like that of SAC's. The SEC filed 686 enforcement actions in the fiscal year that ended in September.

In all, the total fines collected amount to 10% more than 2012 and 22% more than 2011 when the regulator filed its highest number of complaints to date. The SEC brought several significant actions against stock exchanges and other market participants on issues relating to market structure and fair market access. One of the most notable enforcement actions for the year relates to this area, NASDAQ agreed to pay a $10m penalty for its poor systems and decision-making during the Facebook IPO. FY 2013 also included the SEC’s first penalty against an exchange for violations relating to regulatory oversight when the agency charged the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) and an affiliate for various systemic breakdowns.

The SEC is also taking a closer look at municipalities. In a statement the regulator said it increased its attention to securities violations by municipalities and other participants in the market for securities of cities and other governmental issuers this year.

Going forward, the regulator plans to focus on tasks force efforts to stop fraud ad keep a clo......................

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