Securities regulation in global markets

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29 Jan 2007

US SEC Chairman Christopher Cox spoke about Re-Thinking Regulation in the Era of Global Securities Markets at the 34th Annual Securities Regulation Institute.

Here is a Link to the Full Text of Chairman Cox's remarks. Below is an excerpt dealing with financial reporting standards.

...Rapidly advancing technology stands to upend the conventional wisdom by providing us with an unexpected way to deal with these differences. In the same way the experienced traveler uses a dictionary to navigate between languages in which the same thought is expressed in two different ways, interactive data can give us a way to translate between accounting languages in which the same set of data is presented in different ways. And so, perhaps, we'll one day reach a point where it doesn't matter whether a company's financials are stated using US GAAP, or International Financial Reporting Standards. In fact, it may turn out that each individual investor can decide that the data should speak a language uniquely his or her own....

It's impossible to overstate the potential of interactive data for the globalization of markets. Whether or not the nations of the world ever come to agree on every accounting convention or financial reporting rule, interactive data holds the power to reconcile our differences, quickly and efficiently, so that we can use the disclosures that government requires knowledgeably and meaningfully. And after all, that's the real purpose of securities regulation in the first place.

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