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February 18, 2020

RELEASE: SEC’s Actions on Market Data Promises to Help Investors and Strengthen Market Integrity

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Contact:  Christopher Elliott, 202-618-6433, press@bettermarkets.com

Washington, D.C. – Lev Bagramian, Senior Securities Policy Advisor of Better Markets, issued the following statement regarding the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) recent proposal on market data:

“We welcome the SEC’s proposal last Friday to expand the content and availability of certain public information needed to transact in the capital markets.  These pro-investor reforms are long overdue and have the potential to improve the availability of critical information necessary for the well-functioning of today’s capital markets.

“Today, large exchanges are in charge of critical public data feeds that all market participants need to transact on behalf of investors (the so-called ‘SIPs’).  But these same exchanges also make billions of dollars selling their own proprietary data feeds to select market participants.  This conflict of interest has resulted in the exchanges keeping public data feeds slow and their content sparse, thereby advantaging those who buy the private proprietary feeds.  The SEC proposal has the potential to level that playing field.  We have long argued these deeply-rooted conflicts of interest cannot be resolved through the failed model of self-regulation; the exchanges’ profits always seem to get the priority.  We are glad that the SEC is restoring its legitimate role in addressing some of these conflicts of interest.

“We will study the lengthy and complex proposal in detail to ensure that it does in fact significantly improve the content and speed of public market data, which could improve the integrity of our markets and be beneficial to investors.  However, we have some concerns that the proposal also seems to contain certain potentially harmful provisions that could be counterproductive to the SEC’s declared goals of strengthening investor protections.”

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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.com.

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