The Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced the results of its enforcement activities during fiscal year 2013. Most notably, the SEC disclosed that it filed 686 enforcement actions and recovered $3.4 billion in monetary sanctions (a 10 percent increase over FY 2012 and 22 percent increase over FY 2011).
The SEC’s release highlighted a number of specific enforcement actions, including NASDAQ’s agreement to pay a $10 million penalty in connection with the Facebook IPO, multiple insider trading actions brought in connection with the SAC Capital matter, and trial victories in the Fabrice Tourre and optionsXpress cases.
In addition, the SEC also highlighted the change to its “no admissions” policy and the success of its whistleblower program (which involved 3,238 tips and compensation payments to whistleblowers in excess of $14 million).
Finally, the SEC noted that it had created a new Financial Reporting and Audit Task Force to focus on financial statement and other accounting fraud, and a Microcap Task Force to address misconduct in the microcap markets.
Going forward, the SEC stated that it expects to focus on complex financial products, gatekeepers, insider trading, market structure, investment advisers and private funds, and municipal securities.