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June 8, 2022

Don’t Believe the Whining Billionaires; SEC Chair Gensler’s Proposals Will Lower Costs, Increase Access, and Promote the Best Interests of Retail Investors

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Better Markets President and CEO Dennis M. Kelleher issued the following statement in response to the speech by SEC Chair Gary Gensler at the Piper Sandler Global Exchange Conference today:

“We applaud Chair Gensler’s focus on the SEC’s core mission of protecting the best interests of investors and markets.  Competitive, transparent markets with a level playing field are essential to US global leadership in capital markets, to our economy, and to the living standards of all Americans.  But none of that is guaranteed and all of it requires the faith and trust of individual investors to put their hard-earned money into those markets.  Chair Gensler’s entirely reasonable, indeed, modest proposals today are all aimed at ensuring that faith and trust is well-deserved, and that US leadership will continue for many years to come.

“Too many in the financial industry today get rich from anti-competitive and predatory practices in highly fragmented markets that result in retail investors being mistreated if not ripped off.  This was starkly illustrated by the SEC’s recent enforcement action against Robinhood. The Chair targeted those wealth extraction activities and seeks to ensure that all investors get the full transparency and best execution as required by law and as is necessary for the US to continue to have the deepest, most liquid markets in the world.  His proposals will lower costs while increasing transparency, access, and execution quality for retail traders.

“The financial firms that benefit most from today’s rigged markets are already complaining about the Chair’s actions and even claim his proposals will hurt retail investors.  But seriously, who are you going to believe?  The financial firms whose leaders became billionaires from extracting wealth from retail investors in non-transparent, anti-competitive markets or a regulator with nothing to gain from taking action to protect investors and their best interests.  These changes are long overdue, and we look forward to supporting them.”

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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 www.bettermarkets.org

Contact: Anton Becker, Communications Director, at 202-618-6430 or abecker@Bettemarkets.org

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