The SEC and DOJ at NYU

Rod Rosenstein
Rod Rosenstein

Events sponsored by NYU Law’s Institute for Corporate Governance and Finance and the Program on Corporate Compliance and Enforcement (PCCE) brought high-profile enforcers to NYU Law during the past academic year. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) chairman Jay Clayton announced two new priorities for the SEC at a September 2017 event featuring senior agency officials. One new focus for the agency was cybersecurity practices and risk disclosure by public market participants; a second concerned market abuses in the emerging realm of initial coin offerings, a method some start-up companies are utilizing to raise capital in the form of digital assets known as cryptocurrencies.

“I’m not comfortable that the American investing public understands the substantial risks that we face systematically from cyber issues,” said Clayton, who assumed the top post at the securities regulatory agency in May 2017. “I’d like to see better disclosure around that.”

The most high-profile visitor this past year may have been US Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who has become an increasingly well-known Justice Department figure as a result of the special counsel investigation into the Trump presidential campaign. Last October, the deputy attorney general gave the keynote speech at the PCCE fall conference. Discussing deterrence of corporate crime, Rosenstein referred to memos by former deputy attorneys general regarding corporate fraud prosecutions. He made what seemed to be a wry allusion to his highly scrutinized memo to Attorney General Jeff Sessions recommending the dismissal of FBI Director James Comey: “In my opinion, the deputy attorney general should not be known for writing memos. I hope you agree.”

Posted September 4, 2018