U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission building in Washington, D.C. Photo: Diego M. Radzinschi/ALM

The SEC is seeking, through its enforcement actions, to shape the behavior of high-ranking executives, and it plans to do so by targeting their bonuses when their firms engage in wrongdoing.

SEC officials signaled at the SEC Speaks conference last week that they’re pursuing more aggressive use of a section of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act that empowers the commission to claw back certain compensation bonuses and stock-sale profits from CEOs and CFOs when their firms have to re-issue an accounting statement because of misconduct.

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