Morning Roundup: SEC Doesn’t Stand for ‘Secrecy and Espionage Commission’

  • The House of Representatives voted that it wasn’t okay for the Securities and Exchange Commission to duck Freedom of Information Act requests for material it had gathered during its investigations. This makes it easier to determine the exact extent to which the SEC fails to catch people like Bernie Madoff. [WSJ]
  • The General Motors initial public offering will be more like $8 billion to $10 billion instead of somewhere around $20 billion. That’s bad for bankers who’d collect bigger fees on a bigger IPO, but good for greedy U.S. taxpayers who want the best possible return on their bailout investment. [NYT]
  • Merger activity worldwide is up 21 percent year to date, but it might slow down for the rest of the year. Then again, it might pick up again; these things are tough to predict. [Reuters]
  • The yen fell against the dollar on speculation that the Japanese government would fight hard to keep its currency from getting stronger, because a stronger yen means weaker profits for Japan’s exporters. [Bloomberg]
  • Gold, a safe-haven investment, continued its incredible ascent as December futures hit a new high above $1,300 an ounce, in a move that may reflect record-breaking concern about the future of the economy. [MarketWatch]