Daniel A. Nathan

Daniel A. Nathan

Morrison & Foerster LLP

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Latest Posts › FINRA


FINRA’s Revised Sanction Guidelines: Higher, Tougher, Fairer?

FINRA’s newly revised Sanction Guidelines, effective immediately, signal that the upward trend in sanctions against broker-dealers is likely to continue. The Sanction Guidelines, which establish the range of sanctions...more

5/19/2015 - Broker-Dealer Compliance Disciplinary Proceedings Dodd-Frank Enforcement Enforcement Actions FINRA Sanctions

FINRA is Apparently Holding its CARDS

Broker-dealers appear to have succeeded, at least for now, in beating back FINRA’s proposal to capture extensive amounts of data through electronic means....more

5/5/2015 - Broker-Dealer CARDS Data Collection FINRA SIFMA

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update - February 2015

In This Issue: - SEC Proposes Rule Requiring Hedging Disclosure - SEC Reports the Result of its Cybersecurity Sweep of Broker-Dealers and Investment Advisers - House Passes Bill to Ease Volcker Rule and Other...more

2/27/2015 - Background Checks Broker-Dealer CFTC Compliance Cybersecurity Data Protection Dodd-Frank Enforcement Enforcement Actions Equity Swaps FINRA Hedging Investment Adviser Investment Management OCIE SEC

FINRA Issues its Cybersecurity Report, Providing Tools and Encouragement to Broker-Dealers

FINRA recently issued a Report on Cybersecurity Practices (“Report”), growing out of its targeted examination of firms last year. To issue the Report, FINRA gave careful consideration to the needs of many broker-dealers for...more

2/25/2015 - Broker-Dealer Brokers Corporate Governance Cyber Attacks Cybersecurity Data Breach Data Protection Financial Adviser Financial Institutions FINRA Risk Assessment

Heightened Scrutiny of Brokers – SEC Approves FINRA’s Proposed Background Check Rule

In recent years, questions have been raised in many quarters about how brokers with questionable backgrounds have been able to move among firms and remain in the industry. FINRA has responded by enhancing a broker-dealer’s...more

1/14/2015 - Background Checks Broker-Dealer FINRA Proposed Regulation Registration SEC

FINRA Issues a Packed Priorities Letter for 2015

FINRA opened 2015 with a lengthy and ambitious agenda of regulatory priorities. This year’s Regulatory and Examination Priorities Letter is much longer than those issued the last two years, and repeats many of those years’...more

1/9/2015 - Alternative Investment Funds Alternative Mutual Funds Broker-Dealer Conflicts of Interest FINRA Interest Rates IRA Private Placements Regulatory Agenda REITS Variable Annuities

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

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

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

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

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

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 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

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 - Broker-Dealer Due Diligence FINRA IPO Registration Section 5 Securities

FINRA Board of Governors Invalidates Class Action Waivers in Customer Account Agreements

In an April 24th ruling that will have widespread impact among financial institutions, the FINRA Board of Governors held that a broker-dealer violated FINRA rules by including a mandatory class action waiver in its customer...more

4/30/2014 - Broker-Dealer Charles Schwab Class Action Arbitration Waivers Federal Arbitration Act FINRA

Securities Regulators Are Inspired by an Academic Article to Seek Information Regarding Order Routing

Apparently attempting to understand how broker-dealers provide best execution in the face of incentives to trade at certain exchanges, the SEC and FINRA are asking broker-dealers for extensive transaction information...more

4/29/2014 - Broker-Dealer FINRA Rebates SEC Section 17(a) Stock Trades Transaction Fees

Ketchum Shares Bon Mots with BD Industry at SIFMA Meeting

At this week’s Annual SIFMA Law and Compliance meeting, FINRA CEO Rick Ketchum provided a number of candid and pointed comments in a wide-ranging and no-holds-barred interview conducted by long-time senior compliance official...more

4/8/2014 - ACLU Chief Compliance Officers Compliance FINRA SIFMA

FINRA Provides a Detailed Analysis of a Broker-Dealer’s Failure to Adequately Supervise Alternative Investment Sales

In March 2014, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) fined a broker-dealer $950,000 for supervisory deficiencies related to its failure to adequately supervise the sale of “alternative investments.” These...more

3/28/2014 - Business Development Business Development Companies FINRA Oil & Gas REITS

FINRA Protects Seniors by Disciplining Inadequate Supervision of VA Sales

As baby boomers continue to age, securities regulators focus on protecting the growing population of seniors and retirees. For example, the regulators are seeking to ensure that broker-dealers’ systems and procedures for...more

3/7/2014 - Elder Issues FINRA IRA Retirement Variable Annuities

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