Speech by SEC Commissioner:
The Market Structure Must Work for the American Public —
Remarks at Market Structure Roundtable
Commissioner Luis A. Aguilar
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
June 2, 2010
I strongly support the Commission’s effort to evaluate the structure of the capital markets. As with any such effort, the parameters of the inquiry and the choice of who participates in the process will heavily influence the outcome.
It is the Commission’s responsibility to objectively collect information from all sources so that we, the governmental regulator, can make assessments about the optimum market structure that results in fair and orderly markets. Because of the importance of this goal, I am concerned that the views we will hear today at the Commission-sponsored Roundtable will overwhelmingly be from representatives of the financial services industry.
I want to be clear — I am grateful to the panelists for being here today to share their views, and I understand that their viewpoints are not identical. All of you have important information to share with us about how your businesses work. However, I am disappointed that our Roundtable is not constituted to showcase the full breadth of relevant voices — particularly from a number of issuers and investors, including retail investors. And I am concerned that, as a result, today’s discussions will not bring to light how conflicts of interest, and particular business models, may influence the various views we’ll hear today.
As regulators, we are seeking information to understand the current structure of the markets and to make sure they are aligned with their proper purpose: serving long-term investors and serving companies that need to raise capital so they can develop products, build plants, and put people to work. I hope and expect that our staff will seek out diverse information and views as this inquiry moves forward — and I hope that such efforts occur in a public forum such as the one today. After all, the American public needs to be assured that the foxes are not the primary consultants on how to build the hen house. We must hear from all points of view to implement a market structure that is fair and orderly and that benefits the American public.
As today’s discussion unfolds, I hope we can focus on the needs of issuers and ordinary investors.