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SEC Issues New Trading Rules for Employees

Days after a report pointing to possible insider trading by two of its employees, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued new limits for its personnel.

SEC Chairwoman Mary Schapiro unveiled new rules that would prohibit employees from trading stocks of companies that are under investigation by the agency. The rule pertains even if the SEC employees are not personally involved in the investigation.

Other trades will be have to be cleared in advance under the new rules, which still must be approved by the Office of Government Ethics.

The new rules come following a report by the SEC's inspect general suggesting possible insider trading by two attorneys in the division of enforcement.

"These measures will further bolster our standing by helping to prevent not only an actual impropriety, but the appearance of one as well," Schapiro said in a statement.

The new rules also require employees to certify that they have no insider knowledge of companies whose stocks they own, and institutes a computerized compliance system.