Washington, DC — The following is a statement from the Secure Our Savings (SOS) Coalition in response to Securities and Exchange Commissioner (SEC) Hester Peirce’s public endorsement of forced arbitration being included in companies’ charters. SEC officials, including Chairman Jay Clayton, have recently fueled speculation that the SEC was considering abandoning its decades-old view that forced arbitration clauses violate securities laws:
“Commissioner Peirce’s alarming public showing of support for denying investor rights gives serious urgency to the battle over forced arbitration in corporate charters.
“Seniors, first responders, veterans, teachers and other hardworking Americans with investments are rightly outraged by the notion that the SEC could strip away their rights to hold law-breaking companies accountable if they engage in fraud. Forcing wronged investors into rigged, secretive arbitration hearings effectively destroys their ability to recover their losses and leaves them unable to hold unscrupulous companies to account.
“Today’s news is the latest evidence that this precedent-shattering move could happen at any time. The SOS Coalition will continue to advocate for the rights of investors and consumers using every tactic available to convince the other SEC Commissioners that allowing shareholder rights to be dismantled will harm everyday Americans, erode consumer confidence in our markets by virtually eliminating enforcement of our nation’s securities laws, and give a green light to the next unscrupulous company looking to break the rules.”