SEC Chairman Highlights Pressing Matters Affecting Retail Investors

SEC Chairman Jay Clayton urged the Investor Advisory Committee (the “Committee”) to focus on priorities outlined in the SEC Regulatory Flexibility Act agenda. He warned that the Committee’s deliberations on mandatory arbitration provisions and dual-class share structure may require a disproportionate share of resources, and that other authorities and market participants may take action to address these issues. On dual-class structures, Mr. Clayton asserted that any discussion needs to consider additional related concerns beyond just “disclosure deficiencies and investor confusion.”

Mr. Clayton urged the SEC instead to dedicate its resources to matters that affect retail investors, including:

  • Standards of conduct for investment professionals;
  • Examination of equity and fixed income market structure;
  • Regulation of investment products (including exchange-traded funds);
  • Impact of distributed ledger technology;
  • FinTech developments;
  • Elimination of burdensome or ineffective regulations; and
  • Congressionally mandated rulemaking.

Lofchie Comment: That seems a good “to do” list. The priorities reflect a return by the SEC to its traditional missions (which is all to the good) plus FinTech.