What is the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)?

The SEC is short for the Securities and Exchange Commission. It is an agency that is aswwsecurities laws and is the regulating body for the securities industry, the nation’s stock and options exchanges and other electronic securities markets. This agency was first created in 1934 by the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. This act is often referred to as the 1934 Act. It is first intended to be a non-partisan and somewhat judicial regulating body during the Great Depression and then the Crash of 1929 that followed.

This regulatory agency was created at the time to help to police and regulate and bring to light any corporate abuses that would occur related to the stock market. The SEC was given the authority to license and regulate the stock exchanges, the brokers and dealers and the companies who traded securities on the exchanges.

There have been seven major laws that have been enacted by the SEC. They are the Securities Act of 1933, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Trust Indenture Act of 1939, the Investment Company Act of 1940, the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 and the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and the Credit Rating Agency Reform Act of 2006.

The SEC also works with other law enforcement agencies to help prosecute those people and companies, as well, for securities violations. In fact, Congress has given the SEC authority to be able to bring civil actions against individuals and companies who have been caught for fraud, provided false information or have been involved in any type of insider trading.

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