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October 29, 2019

Better Markets Supports the SEC Fighting for Investors Over the Industry for the Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT)

Tuesday, October 29, 2019
Contact: Christopher Elliott, 202-618-6433

Washington, D.C.  –  Dennis Kelleher, Chief Executive Officer of Better Markets, issued the following statement in response to the SEC’s proposed amendments to the national market system plan governing the Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT):

“The Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT) promises to be a revolutionary game-changer for the SEC in detecting, deterring, and punishing market manipulation and predatory behavior.  Done right, its importance for investor protection, market stability and capital formation cannot be overstated.  It will,  finally, move the SEC’s grossly inadequate and outdated market surveillance and enforcement capabilities and technology into the 21st Century, as we detailed in a comment letter here

“However, the SEC’s decisions years ago to outsource the construction and operation of this mission-critical technology to the private sector – and put the very market participants it is supposed to police and punish in charge of its governance structure – were grave mistakes that embedded corrosive conflicts of interest into the very core of the CAT.  It is as if a police department contracted with lawbreakers to provide the police with a really effective computer to catch them if they engage in future illegal activities.

“The SEC’s proposal to impose transparency and other accountability measures, which we support, is a good step, but it must do more.  The SEC must also use its full enforcement arsenal against those who have caused the delay, further amend its rules to improve the governance of the CAT NMS, and eliminate the conflicts of interest that are killing the CAT, harming investors and endangering the markets.

“We applaud SEC Chairman Clayton and the Director of Markets and Trading, in particular, for their efforts to address these failures that they inherited and get the CAT completed as quickly as possible.”


Better Markets is a non-profit, non-partisan, and independent organization founded in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis to promote the public interest in the financial markets, support the financial reform of Wall Street and make our financial system work for all Americans again. Better Markets works with allies – including many in finance – to promote pro-market, pro-business and pro-growth policies that help build a stronger, safer financial system that protects and promotes Americans’ jobs, savings, retirements and more. To learn more, visit

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