Securities Law Prof Blog

Editor: Eric C. Chaffee
Univ. of Toledo College of Law

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Will STOCK Act "Repair Deficit of Trust Between Washington and the American People"?

Spurred on by President Obama's State of the Union address, the Senate yesterday voted, by a vote of 93-2,  to take up the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act of 2012 (STOCK Act).  This would allow the Senate to move on to consideration of the bill.  The White House issued a statement, calling it "an important step to repair the deficit of trust between Washington and the American people."

S. 2038(Download 112th_S.2038[1]) would prohibit members of Congress and Congressional employees from using any nonpublic information derived from the individual's position, or gained from performance of the individual's duties, for personal benefit.  It would make clear that members and employees are not exempt from the insider trading prohibitions and owe a duty of trust and confidence to Congress, the U.S. government and its citizens.  The SEC is also given authority to issue rules to implement the prohibition.

In addition, the bill would require public filing and disclosure of financial disclosure forms of members of Congress and Congressional staff.

There has been no action on the proposed legislation at the House.

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