Speech by SEC Commissioner:
Remarks before the NASD Investor Education Foundation's Military Financial Education Campaign Launch
Commissioner Cynthia A. Glassman
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
February 16, 2006
Good morning. On behalf of the Securities and Exchange Commission, I am delighted to participate in the launch of the NASD Investor Education Foundation's Military Financial Education Campaign. Investor education programs are critical in helping investors make wise investment choices with their hard-earned money. Investor education is especially important for our men and women in the military. While they are on the front lines protecting our country, we want them to have peace of mind that their financial houses are in order. We do not want them to worry that their loved ones will not know where to turn for help on financial matters or that they will fall prey to fraudsters. The Foundation's Military Financial Education Campaign will provide the tools and information our service-members need to make informed investment decisions that will in turn help them buy homes, pay for educational expenses, and save for the future. The Commission supports the Foundation's mission of investor education and has entrusted monies from settlements of our enforcement actions to the Foundation for this and other initiatives.
The SEC has long been dedicated to investor education, believing firmly that the best defense - and offense - against costly mistakes is an educated investor - one who understands the importance of diversification, the trade-off between risk and return, and that, if an opportunity sounds too good to be true, it likely is. Over the years, we have developed a vast array of educational materials that cover these topics and more. I'm proud to say that we have already been distributing these publications to armed services personnel through military financial readiness programs and base libraries - and we look forward to working with the Department of Defense to increase these efforts. We've published articles in Military Money magazine and have participated in investing workshops on several bases. We're delighted to be a content provider for the new SaveAndInvest.org website and will continue to collaborate with the Foundation and its campaign partners on future outreach initiatives. To further ensure that our service men and women get the facts they need to make sound financial decisions, we've launched a new page in the Investor Information section of the SEC's website - at www.sec.gov - for military personnel and their families.
As a military wife myself some 30 years ago, I saw families that could have benefited enormously from knowing the financial facts of life. Sadly, not all were so lucky. I am therefore especially pleased by the Foundation's commitment to financial education for our military community. The multi-faceted program the Foundation and its partners have put together provides clear, understandable, and -- perhaps most importantly -- unbiased information. It not only covers the nuts-and-bolts of saving and investing wisely, but also tackles the tougher issues that all Americans face in today's increasingly complex financial world.
We salute the NASD Investor Education Foundation for taking the lead on the Military Financial Education Campaign. With so much at stake, we are proud to do all we can to support our men and women in uniform.