Knowledge

Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is an agency of the United States federal government, established in the years following the Great Depression of the 1929 to regulate the stock market by the Commission with the Security Act of the 1933 and the Security Exchange Act (1934). The main purpose of the SEC is to “to protect investors, maintain fair, orderly, and efficient markets, and facilitate capital formation.”

Like the CFTC, the five Commissioners of the SEC are appointed by the President for a staggered five-year term; one of the commissioners is designated by the President Chairman of the Commission. The main responsibilities of the Commission are outlined in the main page of the SEC website and are the following:

  • interpret and enforce federal securities laws
  • issue new rules and amend existing rules
  • oversee the inspection of securities firms, brokers, investment advisers, and ratings agencies
  • oversee private regulatory organizations in the securities, accounting, and auditing fields
  • coordinate U.S. securities regulation with federal, state, and foreign authorities

Within the agency, there are five division: Corporation Finance, Trading and Markets, Investment Management, Enforcement and Risk, Strategy and Financial Innovation.

You can find the organisation chart of the SEC at the following link: Securities and Exchange Commission organigramme.