Karmel’s Dissent: The SEC’s Use and Occasional Misuse of Reports of Investigation

A small number of investigations by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) end with the filing of a report rather than a complaint or administrative order. Section 21(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 authorizes the SEC “to publish information” relating to any securities law violations that it discovers. When the SEC issues a report pursuant to this authority, it typically recites its factual findings and discusses how the described conduct violated the securities laws.

SEC reports of investigation represent the views of an expert administrative agency in the context of a particular case. They are also an opportunity … Read more