Mary Jo White Is President’s Choice to Head SEC

Posted by adaniels in Blog on January 29, 2013

President Barack Obama recently named former federal prosecutor Mary Jo White to lead the Securities and Exchange Commission. OnWallStreet.com takes a look as what the appointment means for financial advisors, especially how this will affect the reported establishment of a “uniform fiduciary standard for advisors and broker-dealers.”

White recently said that she plans on continuing to do what ex-SEC head Mary Schapiro did. That includes implementing that uniform fiduciary standard, which is required under the Dodd-Frank Congressional financial reform legislation.

Schapiro wanted to expand the present fiduciary standard, which means that advisors must recommend things which are in the best interest of their customers, to cover broker-dealers. With Schapiro’s resignation from the commission, the agency is currently deadlocked along partisan lines regarding expanding it, but White’s confirmation would add a vote to allow expansion of the standard.

When announcing the nomination, President Obama praised White’s experience. “Over a decade as a U.S. attorney in New York, she helped prosecute white-collar criminals and money launderers,” he noted, as well as prosecuting John Gotti and those who bombed the World Trade Center in 2003.

White said that if she is confirmed, she looks forward “to committing all of my energies to working with” the SEC “to fulfill the agency’s mission to protect investors and to ensure the strength efficiency and the transparency of our capital markets.”

Written by Lisa Swan

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