Trump’s SEC Predicted to Retreat from Robust Enforcement Program

November 2016

Law360 interviewed Stradling’s Kathleen Marcus, co-chair of the firm’s enforcement defense and investigations practice, for an article about transition in the SEC following Mary Jo White’s departure in January. The publication reports that the SEC’s policy of requiring admissions in cases of substantial fraud will likely remain after her tenure, but that her replacement will likely retreat from her “broken windows” enforcement style and possibly slow down the agency’s rulemaking. Marcus commented that she does not anticipate a more robust program for enforcement under the Trump administration than under the Obama administration with Mary Jo White, as a former federal prosecutor, sitting as chair of the agency. Other possible changes under a new chair that could have an impact include revisiting policies like one that delegates authority to open investigations to Enforcement Division staff. According to Marcus, the SEC leverages this option because cases filed in-house take less time to litigate, and a switch to federal courts could slow things down while giving defendants more due process rights. "If they decide to pull back on enforcement, that is a lever they could push.” Read the article.