SEC’s Revolving Door Poses No Great Problem (AccountingToday)

Study finds SEC lawyers who join private law firms are no less aggressive about enforcement.

A new study on the revolving door between the Securities and Exchange Commission and private industry shows the practice does not pose as widespread a problem as its critics argue, according to AccountingToday. The study, by three researchers from Emory University, the University of Washington and Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, finds that contrary to perception, future job prospects in the private sector made lawyers at the SEC step up their enforcement efforts, not rein them in.

Researchers analyzed records of 336 SEC lawyers in a database of civil lawsuits between 1990 and 2007, and found that lawyers who later joined private law firms that defended against the SEC tended to be more aggressive in making referrals to the Justice Department or naming CEOs as defendants.

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