I heard somewhere on a market commentary forum that the current SEC regime is "activist." I paused and tried to figure out what that meant, but I couldn't -- at least to a meaningful degree. Clearly, the top ranks of the regulatory body will have some influence on the overall direction of enforcement/areas of focus. I guess it's no different than factoring in who's at the top of other organizations, be it a multinational corporate, the Fed or an SME for that matter.

Still, I can't help but wonder if seeing the financial markets through the lens of regulatory stance might be helpful.


If there is official terminology to describe SEC regimes, then great, but if not, can someone at least give me a basic frame of reference for what SEC "regimes" there are and how that impacts investors (be they retail or insti)?

1 Answer 1


the current SEC regime is "activist."

You have to know what topic specifically they are talking about.

The regime means the top leadership of the SEC. That would mean the top few positions within the organization. In the case of the SEC they are lead by a small 5 member commission.

The term activist is topic specific. They could be pro-enforcement, or hands off. They could be pro-merger, or make it difficult to approve mergers. They could be pro-small investors, or not protect the small investors.

You also have to watch the time frame, leadership slowly changes due to the fact the commission members have staggered terms, you have to know which regime they are referring to.

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