Thanks to Patte.
Christopher OV Admin
SEC Says New Financial Regulation Law Exempts It from Public Disclosure By Dunstan Prial
So much for transparency.
Under a little-noticed provision of the recently passed financial-reform
legislation, the Securities and Exchange Commission no longer has to
comply with virtually all requests for information releases from the
public, including those filed under the Freedom of Information Act.
The law, signed last week by President Obama, exempts the SEC from
disclosing records or information derived from “surveillance, risk
assessments, or other regulatory and oversight activities.” Given that
the SEC is a regulatory body, the provision covers almost every action
by the agency, lawyers say. Congress and federal agencies can request
information, but the public cannot.
That argument comes despite the President saying that one of the
cornerstones of the sweeping new legislation was more transparent
financial markets. Indeed, in touting the new law, Obama specifically
said it would “increase transparency in financial dealings.”
The SEC cited the new law Tuesday in a FOIA action brought by FOX Business
Network. Steven Mintz, founding partner of law firm Mintz & Gold LLC
in New York, lamented what he described as “the backroom deal that was
cut between Congress and the SEC to keep the SEC’s failures secret. The
only losers here are the American public.”
Perhaps it’s just that the SEC is incompetent and would prefer just making any
public inquiry now against the law? Or how many SEC employees have
access to inside information on pensions and investments?