1939 Professor Felix Frankfurter, Harvard University Law School

As the 2015-16 academic year begins, the museum recommends these materials for the teaching and study of accounting and auditing, business, economics and law:

  • Timeline, with financial regulatory developments in the context of U.S. and world events from 1930 to the present.
  • The Deals Decade, on tender offers, takeovers and the rise of institutional investors, in The Center for Audit Quality Gallery on Corporate Governance.
  • Oral histories interviews with two regulators who died earlier this year: Harvey Goldschmid, former SEC Commissioner and General Counsel, and Dwight Professor of Law, Columbia University School of Law; and Shaun O'Malley, former PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP Senior Partner and Chairman, and Chair of the Public Oversight Board's panel on Audit Effectiveness.
  • Deloitte Fireside Chat X Financial Reporting - Past, Present and Future.
  • The Experts Forum Dodd-Frank, Derivatives and Structured Finance.
  • COSO at Thirty Years, highlighting three decades of the work of the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission in internal control and risk management.

The Back to School Feature is made possible through the generous support of Morrison & Foerster LLP.

Looking Back


1939-1940 SEC Commission: (standing) Robert Healy and George Mathews;
(seated) Edward Eicher, Jerome Frank and Leon Henderson

"But those of you...should also recall President Roosevelt's recent remarks when he signed the Investment Company Act and the Investment Advisers Act. 'These Acts,' he said, 'give the Securities and Exchange Commission power to regulate investment trusts and investment counselors. They mark another milestone in this Administration's vigorous protect the investor. As the pressure of international affairs increases, we are ready for the emergency because of our fight to put our domestic affairs on a true democratic basis. We are cleaning house, putting our financial machinery in good order. This program is essential, not only because it results in necessary reforms, but for the much more important reason that it will enable us to absorb the shock of any crisis.'"

- October 18, 1940 The Sin of Perfectionism - Address of SEC Chairman Jerome Frank before the Annual Meeting of American Institute of Accountants

Despite tremendous growth in the late 1920s, investment companies were essentially unregulated. In the 1930s, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission conducted a major investigation which pointed to serious self-dealing and other abuses in the industry. Enacted in August 1940, the Investment Company Act and the Investment Advisers Act required investment companies and their directors, managers, and advisers to register with the SEC and prohibited many of the worst practices.

Check out these materials in the museum collection for additional content and context for the Acts, or use Search for more information:

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