The Obama administration might move toward giving the Federal Reserve more powers, while stripping some authority from the Securities and Exchange Commission, sources said. Some functions might shift from the SEC to the Fed, while others might go to other federal agencies. The SEC has taken heat for failing to detect the financial crisis as well as industry scandals, but critics said stripping the commission of its power is not the answer.
In another matter, the SEC is expected to propose rules on executive pay, board nominations. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is scheduled to invite public comment on its proposed rules giving shareholders a stronger voice in setting executive compensation and electing directors to corporate boards. Although the rules are technically nothing more than proposals at the moment, they have a good chance of being adopted. Of the regulator's five commissioners, three have already publicly announced their support for the measures.