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SEC Deregulates Hedge Funds

The SEC is back to its old tricks, putting aside the public interest for private concerns. The latest maneuver involves lifting the ban on allowing highly risky investment vehicles known as hedge funds to advertise publicly for the first time. Yes, even in the bubblemania of the 1990s this was not done for fear people would lose their money in the riskiest part of the Wall Street casino.

Hedge funds and other firms that seek private investments will be allowed to advertise publicly for the first time under a rule adopted Wednesday by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Adopted by a 4-1 vote, the rule eliminates an 80-year regime of advertising restrictions intended to safeguard small investors from taking on potentially dangerous risk. The rule covers the way issuers raise funds through private offerings, a process that is exempt from requirements to report public financial statements.

Hedge fund were not under that regulation for 80 years by accident. They are extremely risky vehicles that constantly blow up, leaving investors with nothing.

Jennifer Openshaw, president of Finect, an online network for the financial industry, said the SEC’s lifting of the advertising restriction should be followed by strong investor protections.

“It’s all the more important to be vigilant against bad actors,” said Openshaw. “More information will now be accessible to investors through the use of social media, and the ability of bad actors to pursue unaccredited, unsophisticated investors will grow.”

Thanks SEC. You just led more lambs to the slaughter. It’s open season for the fleecing class.

It becomes more clear everyday that the government’s response to the 2008 financial crisis amounts to “Let’s rebuild the doomsday machine and pray to God it doesn’t crash again.” This is a government, a political system, completely devoid of new ideas. All they can do is try to throw support behind the financial sector and hope it somehow all works out.

Well, it won’t work out. The economy is fundamentally broken and deregulating the most unstable investment vehicles will only make a bad situation worse as more people are now prey for financial predators. Shame on the SEC.

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Dan Wright

Dan Wright

Daniel Wright is a longtime blogger and currently writes for Shadowproof. He lives in New Jersey, by choice.