Pensions & Investments: 2018 to Bring Changes to Congress

Pensions & Investments reporter Hazel Bradford writes:

“Some high-profile committee leadership vacancies in Congress, combined with upcoming midterm elections and a one-sided tax reform victory for Republicans, promise to make 2018 an interesting year on Capitol Hill.

For starters, Republicans who ended 2018 with a major victory on tax reform now have to work with Democrats on fiscal year spending bills and budget limits to avert a government shutdown later this month…

…Many on Capitol Hill watch are expecting the action in 2018 to shift to regulators at the Department of Labor, the SEC and the Treasury Department, which oversees the Financial Stability Oversight Council.

“The real play is going to be on the new people coming into the agencies,” including the SEC, which has its first full commission since 2015, said Paul Atkins, CEO of Patomak Global Partners, a Washington financial services consultancy. Mr. Atkins, a former SEC commissioner, is optimistic the agency will address market structure issues that should be less partisan. “What’s good for investors should be good for markets,” he said. On the enforcement side, he expects SEC officials to press for more personal accountability of officials whose companies are prosecuted for investor fraud.

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