The Securities and Exchange Commission announced Wednesday that the agency filed a record 735 enforcement actions in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30—with 146 of these actions being taken against investment advisors, a 30% increase over 2010.
The record number of enforcement actions, the SEC said, are a result of the enforcement division undergoing its most “significant” reorganization in 2009 and 2010 since being established in the early 1970s.
For instance, the total number of enforcement actions jumped from 677 in 2010 to 735 this year (see chart). The number of enforcement actions against advisors and broker-dealers also shot up, with enforcement actions against advisors/investment companies going from 112 in 2010 to 146 at the end of September. Actions against BDs went from 70 last year to 112 in 2011, a 60% increase.
“We continue to build an unmatched record of holding wrongdoers accountable and returning money to harmed investors,” said SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro, in a statement announcing the enforcement results. “I am proud of our Enforcement Division’s many talented professionals and their efforts that resulted in a broad array of significant enforcement actions, including those related to the financial crisis and its aftermath.”