High Court SEC Disgorgement Ruling Doesn't Empower FTC

Law360 (July 8, 2020, 2:14 PM EDT) -- On June 22, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Liu v. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, upholding the SEC's ability to obtain disgorgement of ill-gotten profits in federal court, so long as the award does not exceed the wrongdoer's net profits and is awarded for victims.[1]

In an 8-1 decision, the court centered its analysis on the Securities Exchange Act, which provides that in SEC enforcement actions, a federal court "may grant ... any equitable relief that may be appropriate or necessary for the benefit of investors."[2] The problem was that "Congress did not define what falls under the umbrella of 'equitable...

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