Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Volume of SEC Litigation Releases over Time

By Tim Dulaney, PhD, FRM and Tim Husson, PhD

Here at SLCG, we have spent a lot of time compiling and summarizing the SEC's Litigation Releases each Friday.  You can find all of those weekly summaries here -- 91 and counting! -- but we noticed that last week had a lot more Litigation Releases than usual.  We also noticed the same thing at the end of last September.  We wondered if there was a pattern here.

Being nerds, we wrote a program to count all of the SEC's Litigation Releases over the past 15 years.  We aggregated them monthly and bimonthly (every two weeks) and looked at the trend over time:



Overall, the number of SEC Litigation Releases fluctuates quite a bit, with some noticable spikes.  Some of those appear to occur at regular intervals.  If we look at the results aggregated by month, something stands out:



It appears that September is the most active month, which certainly matches our experience over the past few years.  This could be for any number of reasons, though it is worth noting that the federal government's fiscal year ends September 30 -- perhaps the SEC is getting in a variety of cases just before a funding deadline.  It looks like the SEC also has the fewest releases from November to February.

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