The Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division have signed an interagency Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to foster cooperation and communication between the agencies with the aim of enhancing competition in the securities industry. Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim of the Antitrust Division announced the first-ever MOU between the Antitrust Division and the SEC, which was executed with SEC Chairman Jay Clayton, before a discussion on equity market structure hosted by MIT’s Golub Center for Finance and Policy this afternoon.
“As competition is embedded in our securities laws, there are many policy areas where the missions of the SEC and DOJ’s Antritrust Division align, but where our respective areas of expertise differ,” said SEC Chairman Jay Clayton. “By formalizing the exchange of knowledge between our agencies, we aim to foster even greater collaboration and cooperation to ensure that we maintain the efficient and competitive markets that American investors rely on.”
“The Antitrust Division and the SEC have prioritized close cooperation with one another in recent years to promote competitive conditions in the securities industry, benefitting both agencies’ enforcement missions,” stated Assistant Attorney General Delrahim. “This MOU institutionalizes a strong working relationship between our two agencies. I expect that it will lead to even more robust, comprehensive analyses incorporating both competition and securities laws concerns, resulting in stronger, healthier markets yielding enhanced consumer benefits.”
Key provisions of the MOU facilitate both communication and cooperation between the agencies. In particular, the MOU establishes a framework for the SEC and the DOJ’s Antitrust Division to continue regular discussions and review law enforcement and regulatory matters affecting competition in the securities industry, including provisions to establish periodic meetings among the respective agencies’ officials. The MOU also provides for the exchange of information and expertise the agencies believe to be potentially relevant and useful to their oversight and enforcement responsibilities, as appropriate and consistent with applicable legal and confidentiality restrictions.