SEC watchdog pushes changes after Madoff failure

Bernard Madoff
Bernard Madoff

WASHINGTON (AP) - The watchdog of the Securities and Exchange Commission is recommending a new system for handling the thousands of tips and complaints the agency receives and other changes to prevent another breakdown like the one that allowed Bernard Madoff's massive fraud to go undetected for years.

The proposals for the agency's enforcement and inspections operations from SEC Inspector General David Kotz also include making it easier for junior-level enforcement attorneys to bring their concerns to top managers.

In a report late last month, Kotz detailed how the SEC bungled five investigations of Madoff's business between June 1992 and last December, when the financier confessed.

Top SEC officials have pledged to fix the problems and say they already have made major changes.

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