Hearings on State of Municipal Securities Markets Scheduled

Jack Humphrey, Regulatory journalist
September 07, 2010 /

A series of field hearings has been scheduled by the Security and Exchange Commission to look at the municipal securities markets, starting its first hearing in San Francisco on September 21 between 9AM to 4.30PM. Disclosure, transparency, credit ratings and internal controls are some of the included topics. Elisse B. Walter, Commissioner will spearhead the hearings. He shall be aided by fellow Commissioners and staff from other offices from cross-section of agencies.

Bill Lockyer, California State Treasurer, Independent Consultant, Stanley Keller, and James McIntire, Monitor of the City of San Diego and Washington State Treasurer will be among the participants.

Mary L. Schapiro, Chairman SEC was of the opinion that current investors retain municipal debts of at least $2.8 trillion. He further added that critical market as it is, it covers almost all aspect of citizens, ranging from drinking water, roads to sanitation et al., and for market to keep on serving the community to its best off ability, investors should be convinced that they are getting correct and enough information for taking appropriate decisions in a correct format and in good time.

A staff report shall be released by the commission after completion of each hearings containing summary of information received, recommendations for, legislative changes, regulatory revisions and best practices need to be adopted by industries.

Other hearings to follow are in Washington D.C., Chicago, Ill., Fla., Austin, Tallahassee and Texas. Set of issues for hearing may be different such as investor protection and education; market stability and liquidity; financial reporting and accounting; municipalities as conduit borrowers; Build America Bonds; and many other related matters.

The Security and Exchange Commission has also invited comments from public and interested parties on e-mails to munifieldhearings@sec.gov.


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