Here are the top three priorities that, on January 15, Mary Schapiro told the Senate Banking Committee she would focus on if confirmed as the next chairman of the SEC.
First and foremost, I will move aggressively to reinvigorate enforcement at the SEC. With investor confidence shaken, it is imperative that the SEC be given the resources and the support it needs to investigate and go after those who cut corners, cheat investors, and break the law. As the first SEC Chairman, Joseph Kennedy, told the nation 75 years ago in explaining the agency’s role, “The Commission will make war without quarter on any who sell securities by fraud or misrepresentation.”
Second, I want to re-engage the SEC with the people we serve, namely, investors. The investor community–from the largest pension fund to the family who has scrimped and saved in their 401(k) or 529 plan–needs to feel that they have someone on their side, that they can go to the SEC for advice, to seek redress, or to have their opinions heard.
Third, as I work to deepen the SEC’s commitment to investor protection, transparency, accountability, and disclosure, I also want to ensure these commitments are preserved in any regulatory overhaul that may be undertaken.