March 22nd, 2011
Econintersect: Michael Oxley, the former congressman who co-wrote the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, has registered as a lobbyist for the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority to promote self-regulation of investment advisors. Follow up:
Oxley, a partner at Baker Hostetler LLP in Washington, registered this week as a Finra lobbyist, saying he would work on securities regulation and the “harmonization of regulation of broker-dealers and investment advisors,” according to his registration form. Finra oversees about 4,560 brokerage firms and is interested in expanding to investment advisors.
Finra contends the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission should use a self-regulatory organization, or SRO, to take over examinations of investment advisors from the agency.
A January SEC study—mandated by the Dodd-Frank Act’s regulatory overhaul—suggested using SROs as an option to increase advisor oversight. Congress hasn’t yet authorized the SEC to make a rule.
Oxley, 67, an Ohio Republican who was chairman of the House Financial Services Committee and is also a senior board advisor at NASDAQ OMX Group Inc., didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. His March 15 lobbyist registration included his former communications director on Capitol Hill, Peggy Peterson, who also works at Baker.
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act, passed in the wake of the Enron accounting scandal, was designed to protect investors from fraudulent corporate accounting.
FINRA, is a private corporation that acts as a self-regulatory organization (SRO). FINRA is the successor to the National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc. (NASD). Though sometimes mistaken for a government agency, it is a non-governmental organization that performs financial regulation of member brokerage firms and exchange markets.