Elisse Walter, the new chairman of the SEC, spoke before the Investor Advisory Committee on the challenges facing the committee and the investors it is dedicated to.
“And despite the often-mentioned 2-2 divide, I find that my fellow commissioners—as well as Commission staff—are eager to find common ground and move forward in a practical and effective manner,” Walter said of the commission, which is split evenly between Republicans and Democrats.
Walter also spoke to the importance of the Investor Advisory Committee in moving forward.
“Just 21 months after Dodd-Frank, the most significant financial reform bill in decades, was enacted—and created this committee—the JOBS Act brought another seismic shift in the way companies, particularly small and emerging ones, raise capital and how individual investors participate in that process,” Walter said. “Against this backdrop, the decisions confronted by individual investors—decisions that are absolutely critical to the course of their lives and the lives of their families—and the information and advice they receive when they make these decisions, are becoming more complex even as the stakes grow higher.”
Walter also discussed the commission’s goals and expectations pertaining to investors.
“When I think about the SEC’s role at a time like this, I like to think of my very dear — if completely imaginary — Aunt Millie, a retail investor with a modest portfolio, looking towards a secure retirement,” Walter said. “Now, as dear to me as she is, Aunt Millie is no hedge fund manager. So when she sits down with her financial professional, and the talk turns to EFTs and target date funds, crowdfunding or her professional’s fees, I want the SEC’s presence to be felt there in that office—whether or not she even knows anything about the SEC…I want the SEC to be there looking out for her, helping her make sense of the environment in which she is investing her future security.”