Daniel A. Nathan

Daniel A. Nathan

Morrison & Foerster LLP

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FINRA Sanctions Member Firm for Failure to Deliver ETF Prospectuses

FINRA recently sanctioned a broker-dealer (the “Firm”) for failure to deliver prospectuses in connection with its sale of ETFs. FINRA also found that the Firm failed to implement a supervisory system reasonably designed to...more

12/19/2014 - Broker-Dealer Enforcement Actions ETFs FINRA Prospectus

SEC and PCAOB Combine Their Focusses on Broker-Dealer Audits and Independence in Settlements with Fifteen Audit Firms

On December 8, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) announced settlements with fifteen audit firms for violating independence rules applicable to auditors of...more

12/15/2014 - Auditors Audits Broker-Dealer Independence Rules PCAOB SEC

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update -- December 2014

In This Issue: - Regulation ..SEC Chair’s Agenda Provides Glimpse of New Rules to Come ..The Results Are In: Investors Favor Additional Regulatory Protection ..SEC Declines to Approve Non-Transparent...more

12/11/2014 - Alternative Mutual Funds Broker-Dealer Disclosure Requirements ETFs Exchange-Traded Products Investment Management Referral Fees SEC

Heightened Supervision of Branch Offices — Tips for the Coming Year

In recent years, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) have heightened their expectations of what constitutes a “comprehensive” branch self-inspection program. Firms...more

12/5/2014 - Audits Broker-Dealer Enforcement FINRA Internal Controls OCIE Risk Assessment SEC

Structured Thoughts: Volume 5, Issue 8 - December 2014

In This Issue: - Key Regulators Speak at Structured Products Conference - FINRA Shows Its CARDS; It Will Use Big Data to Review Suitability of Complex Products Sales - FINRA’s Proposed Bond Mark-up...more

12/2/2014 - Advertising Big Data Broker-Dealer CARDS Disclosure Requirements Exchange-Traded Products FINRA Regulatory Agenda Regulatory Standards SEC Structured Financial Products

The Results Are In: Investors Favor Additional Regulatory Protection

On November 6, 2014, FINRA released results from a survey of U.S. investors measuring the demand for additional regulatory protections. The survey polled 1,000 adults and revealed that an overwhelming majority felt that it...more

11/13/2014 - FINRA Investors Regulatory Agenda Surveys

SEC Staff Finds that Broker-Dealers Still Are Not Conducting Adequate Section 5 Reviews

The staff of the SEC recently addressed broker-dealers’ obligations when engaging in transactions in unregistered securities by issuing FAQs and a Risk Alert that reported the results of examinations of a number of...more

10/22/2014 - Anti-Money Laundering Broker-Dealer Compliance SEC Securities Act of 1933 Unregistered Securities

Takeaways From Broker-Dealers’ Section 5 Inadequacies

The staff of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently addressed broker-dealers’ obligations when they engage in transactions in unregistered securities by issuing FAQs and a risk alert that reported the results of...more

10/22/2014 - Anti-Money Laundering Broker-Dealer Compliance Fraud Market Manipulation SEC Unregistered Securities

SEC Charges Broker-Dealer for Failure to Protect Against Insider Trading by Employees

The Securities and Exchange Commission for the first time brought charges against a broker-dealer for failure to adequately protect against insider trading by its employees. The charges stem from a broker’s use of a...more

10/1/2014 - Broker-Dealer Confidential Information Employer Liability Issues Enforcement Actions Insider Trading Investment Adviser Policies and Procedures SEC

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update -- September 2014

In This Issue: - Regulation: Long-Awaited Money Market Fund Rules Adopted - SEC Staff Offers Guidance Regarding Investment Advisers and Proxy Advisory Firms - SEC Staff Closes Loophole on BDC Asset...more

9/17/2014 - Banks CFTC Conflicts of Interest CPO Dodd-Frank Enforcement Actions FINRA Hedge Funds Investment Adviser Liquidity Fees Money Market Funds Municipal Advisers NAV Pay-To-Play Proxy Advisors Redemption Gates SEC Strategic Enforcement Plan Whistleblowers

Ninth Circuit Brookstreet Decision Upholds Control Person Liability

The Ninth Circuit recently found the principal of a broker-dealer liable for the extensive and aggravated sales practice violations of the firm’s registered representatives. In its unpublished decision (not to be cited as...more

9/9/2014 - Broker-Dealer Professional Liability SEC Summary Judgment

Lying to Examiners Can Lead Quickly to Criminal Charges

Hell hath no fury like a regulator (allegedly) lied to. This week, the SEC brought civil charges, and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York brought criminal charges, against a broker-dealer and its founder...more

8/14/2014 - Books & Records Broker-Dealer Criminal Prosecution Falsified Documents Lying SEC

Additional Fees on Securities Transactions – FINRA Sees No Justification

In an area of broker-dealer practices with relatively little guidance—the appropriate level of commissions or mark ups on securities trades—FINRA recently brought another in a series of cases that provides insight into the...more

7/30/2014 - Broker-Dealer Disclosure Requirements FINRA NASD Sales Commissions Securities Stock Trades Transaction Fees

VA Switches: FINRA Disciplinary Action Reminds Firms About the Need for Adequate Supervisory Procedures

In a case involving unsuitable variable annuity (VA) transactions, FINRA found that having good procedures and discovering improper conduct are not enough. A member firm must also ensure that it has adequate supervisory...more

7/29/2014 - Annuities Brokers FINRA Variable Annuities

Individual Liability: What’s Behind The Headlines?

It’s been open season on financial institutions since the 2008-2009 financial crisis (“Financial Crisis”). State and federal prosecutors and regulators are competing with each other for press coverage of their latest consent...more

7/15/2014 - Banking Crisis Banking Sector C-Suite Executives CFPB Civil Monetary Penalty Consent Order D&O Insurance Directors DOJ FCA FDIC FinCEN FIRREA Individual Accountability Judge Rakoff Legislative Agendas Liability Liability Insurance Officers Personal Liability

FINRA Announces and Publishes Its Sweep of Order Routing Practices

FINRA announced this week that it is conducting a review of its member firms’ order-routing processes and procedures and the execution quality of customer orders in exchange-listed stocks. We previously reported in this...more

7/10/2014 - Brokers FINRA SEC Securities Stock Trades

FINRA Sanctions a Broker for Violating Japanese Insider Trading Law

On July 2, 2014, FINRA announced that it barred a former equity trader from the securities industry based on its finding that he violated Japanese insider trading law by trading in the securities of a Japanese company listed...more

7/10/2014 - Brokers Compliance Financial Crimes FINRA Insider Trading Japan Sanctions Stocks

OCC’s Interim Volcker Rule Examination Procedures Provide Much-Needed Guidance to Banks Seeking to Comply

On June 12, 2014, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) issued interim procedures for examiners to assess banks’ progress in developing a framework to comply with the requirements of what is commonly known as...more

6/18/2014 - Bank Holding Company Banks Federal Reserve OCC Short-Term Investments Standards & Procedures Volcker Rule

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update -- June 2014

In This Issue: - Regulation ..SEC Begins to Scrutinize Registrants’ Cybersecurity Practices ..SEC Staff Sets Boundaries for Adviser Testimonials in Social Media ..Chair White: SEC to Tackle High-Frequency...more

6/16/2014 - Broker-Dealer Cybersecurity Dark Pool FINRA High Frequency Trading Investment Adviser Issuers JOBS Act Legislative Agendas Marijuana New Legislation Private Equity Funds SEC SEC Commissioner SIFIs Transaction Fees

SEC Decision Regarding TIC Advertisements Offers Broader Lessons About Providing Fair and Balanced Disclosures

Earlier this year, the SEC found that CapWest Securities, Inc., a defunct broker-dealer, had failed to comply with advertising rules in promoting investments that use Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code (“1031...more

6/11/2014 - Advertising Disclosure Requirements Enforcement Enforcement Actions FINRA SEC Section 1031

SEC Approves Amendments to FINRA’s Corporate Financing Rule

Broader Availability of Termination Fees and Rights of First Refusal - Elimination of Filing for Certain ETFs: In May 2014, the SEC approved FINRA’s proposed amendments to Rule 5110, commonly called the...more

5/21/2014 - Compliance Corporate Financing Corporate Financing Rule ETFs FINRA SEC

Compliance Overseers Under Financial Regulatory Fire

In the wake of the financial crisis, federal and state regulators are increasingly taking action against individuals for alleged compliance lapses inside financial services companies, and recent reports indicate that...more

5/14/2014 - Chief Compliance Officers Compliance Enforcement Actions Financial Regulatory Reform Personal Liability

BrokerCheck Hyperlinks: FINRA Proposes a Revised Rule

FINRA is seeking to increase investor awareness of BrokerCheck, its online investor tool for researching the professional backgrounds of firms and brokers. BrokerCheck is accessible to investors and all members of the public...more

5/12/2014 - BrokerCheck FINRA

Pre-IPO Selling Procedures Need to Be Adequately Supervised, According to FINRA

Broker-dealers selling interests in IPOs need to have adequate supervisory systems to ensure that registered representatives do not make actual sales before the securities are registered, according to a settlement of a formal...more

5/9/2014 - Anti-Spinning Provisions Broker-Dealer Due Diligence FINRA IPO Registration Section 5 Securities

Financial Regulatory Enforcers Expanding Claims Against Individuals

In the wake of the financial crisis, federal and state regulators are increasingly taking action against individuals for alleged compliance lapses inside financial services companies, and recent reports indicate that...more

5/1/2014 - Chief Compliance Officers Compliance Enforcement Enforcement Actions Officers Personal Liability

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