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Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Champ Takes the SEC to Task Over Outsourced Exams

News summary by MFWire's editors

Norm Champ is no longer at the SEC, and yet he's still putting himself in the middle of key regulatory discussions involving fundsters.

Norm Champ
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
Former Investment Management Division Chief
Champ, who stepped down as SEC investment management division chief in January, now lectures on investment management law at Harvard Law School. Over the weekend he penned an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, attacking an SEC proposal to supplement its own reviews of RIAs (which includes mutual fund shops and other asset managers) with third-party reviews.

Champ calls out the SEC for its lack of productivity, pointing out that the roughly 450 SEC investment management examiners examine about 1,100 RIAs a year. That translates into less than two-and-a-half exams per examiner per year.

He also reminds the paper's readers of the problems with credit-rating agencies and mortgage-backed securities in the lead up to the 2008 financial crisis. And he brings up the quasi duopoly the SEC created after mandating that investment managers vote each proxy, pushing firms into the arms of just two proxy advisory firms.

"Before the SEC forces investment-management firms to hire third-party examiners with all of the unintended consequences that will follow, it should reallocate its own resources and improve its productivity," Champ concludes. 

Edited by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

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