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Man Holding Piggy banks with Private on one and Public on the other

April 8, 2022

The SEC Must Stop Bleeding Public Markets Dry

WASHINGTON, D.C.— Today, Legal Director and Securities Specialist Stephen Hall issued the following statement on the release of Better Markets’ newest report: The SEC Must Stop Bleeding Public Markets Dry:

“Over the last several decades, the SEC’s steadily expanding exemptions from the registration requirements in the U.S. securities laws have shifted capital-raising activities between two parallel markets. One is an expanding private or exempt securities market that is dark, mostly unregulated, and accessible on a limited basis. The other is a shrinking public securities market that is transparent, well-regulated, and broadly accessible.

“Our newest report provides an overview of the increasing dominance of the private markets over the public markets, which undermines investor protection, transparency, and liquidity.  We also lay out the conceptual distortions that underlie the exemptions from registration; the lack of transparency surrounding private offerings, which harms the SEC as well as investors; and the benefits of the public markets that are sacrificed in private offerings.

“Facilitating the growth of the unregulated private markets at the expense of public markets threatens the integrity and vitality of our capital markets and ultimately the financial lifeblood of our economy. Better Markets calls for the SEC to halt any further expansion of the private markets and to begin scaling back those exemptions that are now in place.”

The full report can be read here.


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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