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SEC Considering Less-Regulated Stock Markets for Small Companies

Mary Jo White, chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), photographed in 2014.

Mary Jo White, chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), photographed in 2014.

Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is reviewing whether to allow stock exchanges to start less-regulated markets that will make it easier for small companies to raise money, the agency’s chairman said.

Such “venture exchanges” could boost investors’ interest in stocks with low market values, which trade less frequently than other equities and attract less interest from brokers who make markets, SEC Chair Mary Jo White said Friday.