Our mission is to promote investor trust and confidence and to help small businesses access the U.S. capital markets to grow and create jobs.
America's regional financial services companies go to work every day to help individuals and families achieve economic freedom by growing and preserving their wealth. We support policies that promote financial inclusion, make it easier for Americans to save for retirement, and increase their choice of financial investments, while ensuring that needed investor protections remain in place. We work with members of Congress, the SEC, and FINRA to expand prosperity in communities across the country.
America's Main Street small businesses are the engines that drive our country's economic growth. We support policies that make it easier for America's businesses to access the capital they need to grow and create jobs. Policymakers should make it easier for companies to go and stay public so more American investors can participate in the success and growth of these companies early in their life cycle. Right now, issuers spend an average of $2.5 million to complete an IPO, and $1.5 million annually once they are public. Since the year 2000, the average length of a 10-K filing for public companies has increased by nearly 30%. It's time to modernize capital markets regulation and prioritize small business capital formation.
We strongly support policies that allow America's Main Street investors and retirement savers to participate in our capital markets without exposing their most sensitive data to cybercriminals and other bad actors. To that end, we have been advocating for the Securities and Exchange Commission to halt its misguided policy of collecting retail investor personally identifiable information through its Consolidated Audit Trail government database. We support the SEC bringing investor trust and confidence to the market through enhanced surveillance, but it must be done without harming investor privacy.
Market structure must support small business capital formation and market stability. Currently, it does not. The big picture discussion must recognize that different tiers of market structure exist; that the current one-size-fits-all regime has contributed to a decrease in IPOs; that the reliance on “time-price” priority exacerbates price moves in all securities; and that when retail investors and small business owners see the market nose dive over 1000 points in minutes of trading it does not instill confidence in the market. Wholesale changes to the national market system are needed to help small businesses grow and better protect investors. The SEC must move away from its past position that a one-size-fits-all market structure works and adopt rules that acknowledge that different tiers exist. The current rules favor Wall Street's drive for speed and fragmentation over America's small business and Main street investors. This needs to change.
We strongly support the rights of shareholders to have their voices heard and hold companies accountable. Unfortunately, over time proxy advisory megafirms have exploited Main Street investors by prioritizing a conflict-ridden political agenda over the retirement security of millions of Americans. We support reforms at the SEC and through Congress to modernize the corporate governance process to increase transparency and accountability. Additionally, as economic freedom continues to come under attack by policymakers in Washington, we advocate for policies that help Main Street investors and retirement savers grow and preserve their wealth. Attacks on stock buybacks and dividends are a direct attack on the savings of hardworking Americans, senior citizens, and retirees.
America’s fixed income market funds growth and prosperity across this country, while creating opportunities for investors and retirement savers to prosper. ASA advocacy seeks to make a positive impact on the fixed income markets and the millions of American investors that rely on these securities to reach their financial goals. We advocate on small municipal bond projects, large corporate debt offerings, infrastructure initiatives, and housing finance reform. We work with Congress, the SEC, FINRA, the MSRB and other policymakers to guarantee our members, our investors, and our communities have a voice at the table.