The Securities and Exchange Commission may be getting closer to giving the green light to many exchange traded funds awaiting regulatory approval after recently hiring an attorney who previously worked for leveraged and inverse ETF provider ProShares, according to a report Monday.

Reports surfaced in late January that the SEC had hired Barry Pershkow to beef up its expertise on ETFs. He started last month as a senior special counsel in the SEC’s Investment Management Division, Reuters reported.

The move could signal an end for the delays that have prevented ETF firms from introducing funds that use derivatives, Morningstar said Monday.

“In particular, given Pershkow’s experience at ProFunds, we could envision Pershkow offering clarity on the role of leveraged and inverse ETFs, as well as on the appropriateness of ETFs’ use of derivatives. He also likely would help settle longstanding (but in Morningstar’s view, baseless) allegations about ETFs’ impact on market swings that have lingered since the May 2010 ‘flash crash,’” according to the article.

“Finally, Pershkow could help to expedite exemptive relief applications by would-be issuers of actively managed ETFs,” Morningstar added.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of John Spence, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.

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