Statistics, Schmatistics: SEC Enforcement Chief Rejects Numbers, Dollars as Metric for Corporate Enforcement
What’s the best way to figure out whether the government is doing a good job of cracking down on lawbreaking companies?
If you ask the current bosses at one federal regulator, it isn’t the number of cases, or the total amount of fines. Nope. According to Stephanie Avakian, who co-directs enforcement for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), it’s all about quality over quantity.
At Avakian’s agency, corporate penalties plummeted 68 percent between the Obama administration’s last year the Trump administration’s first year, from more than $2.9 billion to about $927 million, according to Public Citizen’s Corporate Impunity report, published in July.
Under Trump, the SEC’s number of completed enforcement actions against corporations dropped 44 percent, from 207 under Obama to 116 under Trump. More