Andrew Ceresney, the new co-head of the Division of Enforcement for the SEC, recently remarked that the agency is shifting its efforts to focus on areas that have not received as much attention in the years following the financial crisis. These areas include complex securities, financial reporting fraud, microcap fraud, market structure and implementation of new rules.

Previously, under the direction of former Division of Enforcement Director Robert Khuzami, the SEC had created specialized prosecution units to file cases related to the financial crisis and other critical areas such as asset management, market abuse, structured products, foreign corrupt practices, municipal securities and public pensions. "Those cases are coming to an end so we need to turn the page," Mr. Ceresney told a recent conference in New York, noting the agency's new direction is "a work in progress."

Mr. Ceresney explained that the agency is also looking at fraud that could stem from changes to, as well as loosening of, some long-standing securities rules. Specifically, the Dodd-Frank Act, including the forthcoming Volcker Rule, and the 2012 Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act are new regulations that could enforce increased scrutiny.