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Hard to protect investors without funding, SEC's Schapiro says

April 8, 2011 |  7:47 am

While funding for the regulatory agency is under fire in Washington, D.C., it will be difficult for the Securities and Exchange Commission to implement new regulations or set up its long-awaited office of investor advocate, SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro said Friday.

Schapiro addressed a group of about 150 of the nation's financial journalists, gathered in Dallas for the annual convention of the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.

"We can get the rules written," Schapiro said. "What we are not going to be able to do is operationalize them."

She said the agency has requested funding to create an office of investor advocate, as authorized by financial reform legislation passed in the wake of the Wall Street meltdown.

Also on the agenda for the business journalists gathered in Dallas: a discussion later Friday with the chief executive of Southwest Airlines, who will discuss that company's recent near-disaster when part of one of its planes tore open while in flight; and a speech by Elizabeth Warren, who is working with the Obama administration to set up the newly authorized Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

--- Sharon Bernstein

On Twitter /sharonbernstein