Posts from October 2016.

The SEC reports it brought 868 enforcement actions in the fiscal year ended September 30, 2016 -- more than ever before, and for the third year in a row. But a Wall Street Journal article this week attributes it to playing "small ball" with little, easily-won cases.

In the Journal's analysis, the SEC's enforcement numbers would have remained relatively flat (up some) if not for the addition of 91 smaller cases under Chair White's "broken windows" mandate. The mandate derives from community policing models (and a 1982 article by political scientist James Q. Wilson) that posit overall ...

Posted in: SEC

The Sixth Circuit this week declined the SEC's request to dismiss a Constitutional challenge to the new MSRB pay-to-play rules. Instead, the Court ordered the case to a merits panel for consideration. The Republican parties of Tennessee, Georgia and New York are challenging the regulations in consolidated actions.

The SEC argued that its tacit "deemed approval" of new MSRB pay-to-play rules didn't constitute agency action. The SEC's "no we didn't" argument was an attempt to avoid judicial review of the agency's [in]action that allowed the rules to become effective. I discussed the ...

Posted in: MSRB

On October 5, 2016, the Supreme Court in Salman v. United States will hear oral argument on its first insider trading case in nearly 20 years. At issue is whether a tipper must receive a pecuniary benefit for a tipper and tippee to be held criminally liable under 10b-5, or whether disclosure by itself can trigger liability. This case will resolve a circuit split that ranges from the broad view that a tipper and tippee are liable if the disclosed inside information is a "gift" to the narrow view that the tipper must receive a tangible pecuniary benefit in exchange for the inside information.

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