Compliance Bits and Pieces for May 14

Here are some interesting articles from the past week:

When Investors Say Bad Things on Pay by Matt Kelly in Compliance Week‘s The Big Picture

Shareholders had their say on pay at two U.S. corporations last week—and for the first time ever in this country, the answer was “no.” Motorola held its annual meeting on May 3, where only 45 percent of shareholders cast votes in favor of its executive compensation plan; 44 percent voted against it, and 10 percent abstained. Occidental Petroleum then held its meeting last Friday. The company won’t disclosed precise results until later this week, but confirmed in a press release that its shareholders also gave management’s compensation plans the thumbs-down.

Creating a Dynamic Investment Management Regulatory Scheme by Andrew J. Donohue, Director of the Division of Investment Management at the Securities and Exchange Commission in Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation

This year, not only is Congress considering comprehensive legislation that could impact even the most fundamental aspects of how our financial markets are governed, but we also saw last week the Supreme Court deliver a landmark decision concerning the regulation of investment companies. You just don’t see that every day (I guess thankfully, although in this case, it was gratifying to see the Court affirm a long-held approach regarding fund Boards’ review of advisory fees).

What Business is Wall Street In? by Mark Cuban in Business Insider

The best analogy for traders? They are hackers. Just as hackers search for and exploit operating system and application shortcomings, traders do the same thing. A hacker wants to jump in front of your shopping cart and grab your credit card and then sell it. A high frequency trader wants to jump in front of your trade and then sell that stock to you. A hacker will tell you that they are serving a purpose by identifying the weak links in your system. A trader will tell you they deserve the pennies they are making on the trade because they provide liquidity to the market.

The Hard Timers from The FCPA Blog

Compliance officers will want to keep a copy of the table below close at hand. What better way to answer those who insist that the FCPA is small potatoes, after all, when you look at the relatively few enforcement actions over the past 33 years. Each name on this list represents a terrible tragedy, often with permanent damage extending to families. Here are the 22 men (no women so far), most of them former company executives, who’ve spent time in prison for FCPA-related convictions.

A Glimpse Into SEC Enforcement, by Way of Goldman by Bruce Carton in Securities Docket

In a time of ongoing heightened scrutiny for the Securities and Exchange Commission, many current and former leaders of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement met recently for an extraordinary panel discussion at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The panel consisted of SEC legend (and former Enforcement Division director and federal judge) Stanley Sporkin; his son, Thomas Sporkin, who now leads the SEC’s new Office of Market Intelligence (OMI); George Curtis, a former Enforcement deputy director; and John Stark, former chief of the SEC’s Office of Internet Enforcement. That legal firepower was arguably matched by the audience, which included current SEC Associate Enforcement Director Scott Friestad, former Enforcement boss Linda Chatman Thomsen, and several dozen other leading SEC practitioners and followers.