The Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund is strongly urging the SEC against raising the quarterly reporting requirements for institutional investors 35-fold that would take away up to 90% of the existing reporting that is vital to market participants and researchers alike.
The private equity industry, seeing a window of opportunity following the onset of the pandemic, has taken it upon itself to have the companies that it owns issue at least $10 billion in debt solely for the purpose of paying itself. This is yet another example of private equity looting.
What industry calls “innovation” is often easily mapped to a longstanding financial service and therefore the existing laws should apply. At the same time, certain tools and certain forms of partnerships should have no place in our economy whatsoever. Treating innovation as an unqualified good leads regulators to ignore both considerations of equity and long-term, sustainable innovation. Give the interface between powerful corporations, complex products, and the public, precaution should be the norm, as it is in food and drug regulation.
Ten years after Congress passed a major reform of Wall Street in response to the financial crisis voters overwhelmingly support more and tougher regulation of finance and they strongly approve of the mission of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. And, as the decade after the 2008 crisis unfolded to reveal continuing abuses by Wall Street, and the growth of predatory financial practices, notably by private equity, the public’s appetite for additional reform has strengthened. And the results underscore the need for rigorous oversight to ensure consumers aren’t victimized by unscrupulous lending practices.
Voters across all political parties are broadly and intensely supportive of strong consumer financial protections and of tough regulation of the financial services industry. This sentiment extends not only to keeping existing measures in place but expanding on what Congress did a decade ago, and has proved durable throughout the period since the 2008 financial crisis, through the weak recovery that followed and into the searing recession caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The federal tax code includes many tax breaks and loopholes that provide tremendous cash benefits to real estate investors, developers, and corporate landlords. Closing these loopholes would generate billions of dollars in revenue.
With this new rule, the SEC is undermining the ability of investors to use the shareholder proposal process to call companies to task on their failures to behave responsibly. Now, it will be much more expensive for small investors to submit shareholder proposals. It will be harder for them to resubmit proposals — a frequent practice — because of higher resubmission thresholds. It’s a gift of new power to irresponsible management and a blow to the cause of corporate accountability.