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SEC actions against public companies continue to fall: Cornerstone

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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission enforcement actions against public companies and their subsidiaries continued a downward trend through the first half of the 2018 fiscal year, totaling 15, which was a 67% decrease from the 45 filed in the first half of fiscal year 2017, says a report.

The SEC filed 17 actions against public companies and their subsidiaries during the second half of fiscal year 2017, compared with 47 for the comparable period in the second half of 2016, according to the report issued Tuesday by San Francisco-based Cornerstone Research Inc. and the New York-based NYU Pollack Center for Law & Business titled SEC Enforcement Activity: Public Companies and Subsidiaries – Midyear FY 2018. The report is based on data from the Securities Enforcement Empirical Database. 

The average for fiscal year 2010 through fiscal year 2017 is about 29 actions per half year, with the median about 26 actions per half year, according to the report. The fiscal half year ends in March.

Stephen Choi, the Murray and Kathleen Bring Professor of Law at the NY School of Law, said in a statement, “A narrow range of industries were targeted, with finance, insurance and real estate accounting for almost 70% of new actions.”