Thursday, June 11, 2009

SEC Survived, Schapiro Now Fights to Keep Regulatory Teeth

In late April, senior Securities and Exchange Commission enforcement lawyers met to discuss a shake-up that would place them into specialized groups. Some senior lawyers were skeptical.

SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro wasn't hearing it. According to several people present, she said lawmakers were harshly scrutinizing the agency and "we need to demonstrate that we're going to make changes." Then she warned, "If we don't get serious about this process, we may cease to exist." Schapiro, on the job since late January, is fighting two closely related battles: fixing a troubled agency and persuading Congress and the Obama administration that it deserves to survive.

Chairman Mary Schapiro, left, needs to convince Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, among others, the value of a strong SEC. Here, the two at a meeting on executive compensation in Washington on Wednesday. Now she is poised to notch her first victory. Printed in The Wall Street Journal, page M4 Write to Kara Scannell at

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