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SEC slow to catch up on fraud?

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“As financial markets have grown increasingly complicated — which was the case with this part of Madoff’s operation — the SEC has struggled to keep up with the changes,” writes Daniel Wagner and Pete Yost of the Associated Press.

“The circumstance of this relatively tiny bureaucracy — 3,567 employees including clerical workers — is that of an agency overwhelmed… One small slice of the SEC’s responsibilities is to regulate the industry’s 10,800 financial advisers, one of whom was Madoff. The agency was warned several times of possible fraud going on at Madoff’s operation — including a series of e-mails from a Massachusetts whistleblower that now seem quite prophetic — but nothing happened.

This is not at all surprising to those who have worked at the SEC, where information overload is a fact of life.”

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