What is Alberta Securities Commission (ASC)

The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) is a provincial regulatory agency that is responsible for administering the province of Alberta's securities laws. Alberta securities commission objectives are to foster fair and efficient capital markets in Alberta, and to protect investors. The ASC, as it is commonly known, is a member of the Canadian Securities Administrators, the voluntary umbrella organization of Canada's provincial and territorial securities regulators.

BREAKING DOWN Alberta Securities Commission (ASC)

The Alberta Securities Commission has two operational levels, ASC members and staff (which includes executive management). ASC members set policy and recommend changes to the Securities Act and regulations. Staff responsibilities include daily operations, as well as registration, prospectus review and exemption, and enforcement.

The ASC is a key organization in the Canadian securities industry, as the province of Alberta is one of the biggest producers of energy globally, while the city of Calgary is home to the head offices of numerous Canadian companies.

Functions of the Alberta Securities Commission

The ASC administers the Securities Act (Alberta), which is designed to ensure that Alberta’s capital markets operate fairly and efficiently for participants and that investors have timely, accurate information on which to base investment decisions. It also ensures that those who sell securities in Alberta are registered and that they conduct themselves according to applicable laws and professional standards.

The ASC regulates all securities-related activity in Alberta, either directly or indirectly through self-regulatory organizations (SROs). To ensure SROs effectively conduct this regulation in a manner that meets standards and fulfills our responsibilities, securities regulators conduct regular reviews of these organizations.

The ASC regulates the activities in Alberta of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC), the Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada (MFDA), the Natural Gas Exchange Inc. and the Alberta Watt Exchange Limited. Along with the British Columbia Securities Commission, the ASC oversees the operations of the TSX Venture Exchange (TSXV).

Alberta’s Lieutenant Governor in Council appoints ASC Commission Members. Members determine policy, consider and approve new rules and recommend changes to the Securities Act (Alberta), the regulations made pursuant to the Act, and the Alberta Securities Commission Rules.

Members may grant discretionary exemptions from the requirements of Alberta securities laws and conduct hearings into matters that affect the public interest in Alberta’s capital market. In addition, members act as the ASC’s board of directors, overseeing the management of the ASC. As a member of the Canadian Securities Administrators, the ASC works to improve, coordinate and harmonize the regulation of Canada's capital markets.