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March 16, 1987

SEC’s EDGAR ELECTRONIC PRIDE & JOY COMES UNDER FIRE FROM REPRESENTATIVES

By CBR Staff Writer

The Securities & Exchange Commission’s troubled Edgar Electronic Data-Gathering, Analysis and Retrieval system being designed to enable companies to submit their mandatory financial information returns electronically, is coming under more fire. The chairmen of the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee, and Telecommunications & Finance subcomittee, say that Congress should not authorise the SEC to proceed with Edgar until major policy, technical and legal issues are resolved. We see no need to make the Edgar project operational before it is fully developed and justified merely for the sake of saying the SEC reporting system has joined the computer age, say the two chairmen. That type of folly has too often cost the federal government dearly in quality, money and public confidence, they continued in a letter to the chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, State and Judiciary – on the same day the SEC’s chairman, John Shad, was up on Capitol Hill praising Edgar and seeking $20m in the 1988 budget to cover start-up costs for it.

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