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Allan B. Afterman, PhD, CPA
President Trump has nominated Wall Street lawyer Walter “Jay” Clayton to be the next chairman of the SEC. While Clayton has no experience as a prosecutor or a regulator, he does have a wealth of experience with corporate mergers and acquisitions and a deep understanding of the capital markets. As of this writing, Clayton has yet to face Senate hearings, during which he is sure to be asked tough questions concerning his ties to Goldman Sachs and other large Wall Street firms. Of particular interest, of course, will be his official position regarding regulation and enforcement. Even at this early date, however, it seems clear that Clayton was tapped by President Trump because he shares the President's views that regulations stifle rather than promote investment in and by U.S. businesses. In a September 2015 video released by Sullivan & Cromwell, of which Clayton is a partner, he expressed his disfavor of government attempts to impose cyber-security mandates on individual companies. Clayton compared such mandates to the Dodd-Frank and Sarbanes-Oxley Acts, both of which he characterized as faulty and lacking focus, particularly as they affect the banking industry (http://bit.ly/2jmx5XP).
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