What You Need to Know
- Gensler and his two fellow Democratic SEC commissioners can form a 3-2 majority.
- Payment for order flow is a likely SEC target, Schwab's general counsel Christopher Gilkerson predicts.
- Gilkerson lays out how he thinks Gensler will address the GameStop frenzy.
Gary Gensler’s Senate confirmation vote to be chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission is set for the week of April 12. He is widely expected to be confirmed.
Gensler “will receive some bipartisan support,” Christopher Gilkerson, Charles Schwab’s senior vice president and general counsel, said Tuesday during a call with reporters.
On balance, Gensler’s “very well-rounded” experience “will be great in serving RIAs,” Gilkerson opined.
“Gensler’s going to be part of an activist regulatory agenda generally in the financial service sector,” according to Gilkerson. On the commission, he “has two fellow Democrats,” Acting SEC Chair Allison Herren Lee and Caroline Crenshaw, “to form a 3-2 majority.”
While Gensler’s background as a professor of blockchain, digital currency, financial technology and public policy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology will help inform his agenda in areas like cryptocurrency, he’s also expressed some concerns that “ordinary investors can pay too much for actively managed funds compared to indexing, so that might be something that helps drive his focus” at the SEC, Gilkerson said.
During his nomination hearing on March 2 before the committee, Gensler laid out the steps he’d consider to address the recent market volatility related to the GameStop trading frenzy, as well as his approach to regulating cryptocurrencies.
The “fallout from the GameStop trading situation will also be pretty high on his agenda,” Gilkerson said. “That was pretty apparent during his confirmation hearing” before the Senate Banking Committee.