SEC Annual Report Details Robust Enforcement Efforts, With Continuing Focus on Retail Investors and Cyber Matters

The SEC’s Division of Enforcement (Division) recently released its third Annual Report (Report) covering the Division’s accomplishments in fiscal year (FY) 2019. The Report, which includes a comprehensive introduction by Division Co‑Directors Stephanie Avakian and Steven Peikin, offers perspective into the Division’s priorities and the nature of FY 2019’s 862 enforcement proceedings, which yielded over $4.3 billion in penalties and disgorgement – nearly $1.2 billion of which was distributed to harmed investors. This article discusses the key takeaways from the Report. For coverage of the Division’s past two annual reports, see “SEC Enforcement Division Annual Report Emphasizes Continuing Focus on Retail Investors, Individual Accountability, Cyber Misconduct and Digital Assets” (Dec. 6, 2018); and “SEC Signals Aggressive Stance on Individual Responsibility, Including Potential CCO Liability, in FY 2017 Annual Report” (Dec. 14, 2017).

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