Washington — You can add Barney Frank’s voice to the chorus questioning the passage of SEC rule 151A in the waning hours of the Bush Administration.

The Massachusetts Democrat and House Financial Services Committee chairman released a statement after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopted the rule by a 4-1 margin. Rule 151A would define certain types of equity-indexed annuities as securities, rather than insurance products, for purposes of the Federal securities laws.

“I regret the fact that the SEC has moved ahead in the very last days of an outgoing administration on something this controversial,” the statement reads. “The President has earlier said he was going to urge that last minute rules of this sort will not go forward, and it is a disservice to the important interests involved here to issue a midnight ruling of this sort. I urged the Chairman of the SEC to withhold and I am very sorry that he did not respond to a large number of requests to defer action until a new administration can deal with it.”

Source: House Financial Services Committee

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