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'A chill down the spine'

November 3, 2009 - Mike Maneval

Economics blogger Shahien Nasiripour of Huffington Post warns the Obama administration and several members of the U.S. House are working together to weaken investor protections by exempting more than half of public companies from rules mandating auditing of internal controls.

The companies, with market values less than $75 million, have escaped compliance under the Bush administration through a pattern of deferrals. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairwoman Mary Schapiro said in October the waivers would no longer be issued, but Democrats Carolyn Maloney and John Adler and Republican Scott Garrett are pushing measures in the House to delay or outright destroy the auditing mandate. And Adler maintains White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel is encouraging the effort to strip investor protections.

The Consumer Federation of America's Barbara Roper, Nasiripour reports, summed up the development thusly: "Their message that regulation is just too burdensome and too costly should send a chill down the spine of anyone who still held out hope that this Administration is serious about regulatory reform."


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