At the beginning of the federal shutdown, the SEC announced that it would continue to operate as normal “for a few weeks” because of its ability to access a pool of funds not available to other federal agencies. But as we continue into the third week of the federal shutdown, that ambiguous timeline of a “few weeks” may be nearing an end. In the event the SEC runs out of its backup funding, it has a contingency plan, which it released in late September.

Following is a summary of what functions will, and won’t, continue in the event of an SEC shutdown.

These SEC activities will continue:

  • Emergency enforcement and litigation matters (including temporary restraining orders and actions necessary to protect public and private property)
  • Monitoring and processing of tips, referrals, and complaints in order to identify “emergency” matters
  • EDGAR and other filing systems
  • Monitoring of money market funds, broker-dealers in financial distress, and any international market developments with potential impacts on the U.S.
  • Internal human resources and security functions necessary to transition into shutdown capacity

These SEC activities will be discontinued:

  • Ongoing litigation activities and investigations that are non-emergency or not necessary for the protection of property.
  • Debt collection efforts or distribution of funds to harmed investors
  • Review and approval of registration applications for entities and new financial products
  • Review of periodic reports and other filings
  • Non-emergency support to registrants
  • Non-emergency rule-making activities, issuance of no-action letters, and processing of applications for exemptive relief
  • Routine oversight of self-regulatory organizations and the PCAOB
  • Processing FOIA requests

The SEC estimates that only 252 of its 4,149 employees will be “designated as excepted” — i.e., they will continue to work as normal. In case you were wondering, SEC employees are not allowed to show up to work for free:

“During the shutdown, employees who have not been designated as excepted may not volunteer to work without pay. Such voluntary services are a violation of the Antideficiency Act and will not be permitted under any circumstances.”

Read the full SEC shutdown procedure and list of continued and discontinued functions.