The SEC is, in full, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. The SEC is the US federal agency that administers and enforces the country's federal securities laws and regulates its securities markets. Among other responsibilities, it oversees the issue and trading of various forms of securities by public and private companies, as well as their ongoing disclosures.

Forms that public companies must file with the SEC are available on EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval). You can review your company's annual report, proxy statement, and Form S-8 for more details about its financial condition and its stock plan.

For examples of the SEC's activities that involve stock compensation, see the FAQs on insider trading, equity grants at pre-IPO companies, Section 16 and Rule 144.