Jay G. Baris

Jay G. Baris

Morrison & Foerster LLP

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SEC Proposes Business Continuity and Transition Rules for Advisers While Staff Publishes Similar Guidance for Funds

The SEC’s Division of Investment Management published regulatory guidance on June 28, 2016, highlighting the need for registered investment company complexes to review their business continuity plans to ensure they are...more

7/5/2016 - Business Continuity Plans Investment Adviser Investment Funds Investment Management Registered Investment Companies (RICs) SEC

SEC Charges Private Fund Administrator with “Gatekeeper Failures”

Add fund administrators to the list of service providers the SEC expects to act as “gatekeepers.” In two separate settled actions last week, the SEC found that a private fund administrator “caused” the managers’ unregistered...more

6/24/2016 - Disgorgement Enforcement Actions Fund Managers Investment Adviser Penalties Private Equity Funds SEC Unregistered Funds

OCIE Publishes Exam Priorities for 2016

The National Exam Program of the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) published its examination priorities for 2016 this week. Much like last year’s letter, this year’s letter is organized around...more

1/16/2016 - Alternative Fee Arrangements Analytics Broker-Dealer ETFs Examination Priorities Investment Adviser Investor Protection OCIE Pay-To-Play Retail Investors SEC

SEC Sanctions Broker-Dealer and Affiliated Asset Manager for Breaching Information Barriers for Exchange-Traded Products

On October 8, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged an investment adviser and a broker dealer for failing to maintain and enforce polices to prevent misuse of material non-public information. Without admitting...more

10/22/2015 - Broker-Dealer Disgorgement Enforcement Actions ETNs Information Sharing Insider Trading Investment Adviser Material Nonpublic Information Neither Admit Nor Deny Settlements Penalties Sanctions SEC

Conflicts of Interest: When You're Having Too Much Fun at That Business Lunch

How should fund directors monitor gifts and entertainment received by investment adviser personnel? This question moved to the forefront in February, when the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Investment...more

7/28/2015 - Board of Directors Broker-Dealer Chief Compliance Officers Compliance Conflicts of Interest Directors Division of Investment Management Gifts Investment Adviser Investment Advisers Act of 1940 Investment Companies Policies and Procedures SEC

SEC's Warning — Fund Trustees Are Fair Game

In a cease-and-desist order entered on June 17, 2015, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission found that a fund adviser, two independent trustees and an inside trustee willfully violated Section 15(c) of the Investment...more

7/20/2015 - Board of Trustees Cease and Desist Orders Civil Monetary Penalty Contract Renewal Disclosure Requirements Fiduciary Duty Fines Investment Adviser Investment Advisory Agreements Investment Company Act of 1940 Mutual Funds Section 15(c) Trustees

SEC Commissioner: Don’t Hold CCOs Accountable for Misdeeds of Advisers

SEC Commissioner Daniel Gallagher, in a speech on June 25, 2015, said that a perceived trend by the SEC toward “strict liability” for chief compliance officers (CCOs) is “sending a troubling message.” The statement...more

7/2/2015 - Chief Compliance Officers Enforcement Actions Investment Adviser Investment Management SEC Strict Liability

OCIE Launches Sweep Examination of BD/IA Retirement Investments

The SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) is launching a sweep examination that will target the retirement-based savings activities of broker-dealers and investment advisers. The multi-year...more

6/27/2015 - Broker-Dealer Industry Examinations Investment Adviser OCIE Retirement Plan SEC Strategic Enforcement Plan

The Guide to Social Media and Securities Law - June 2015

The growing use of social media has created challenges for federal securities regulators, who must enforce antifraud rules that were written at a time when the prevailing technology was the newspaper. This Guide...more

6/24/2015 - Broker-Dealer Financial Institutions Investment Adviser Social Media

SEC Sanctions Independent Trustees for Deficient Advisory Contract Review

In a cease-and-desist order entered on June 17, 2015, the SEC found that a fund adviser, two independent trustees, and an inside trustee willfully violated Section 15(c) of the Investment Company Act of 1940 (the “1940 Act”)...more

6/22/2015 - Investment Adviser Investment Advisory Agreements Investment Company Act of 1940 SEC Trustees

The Guide to Social Media and the Securities Laws

The growing use of social media has created challenges for federal securities regulators, who must enforce antifraud rules that were written at a time when the prevailing technology was the newspaper. This Guide...more

6/17/2015 - Broker-Dealer Capital Raising Crowdfunding FINRA Investment Adviser Investment Companies Material Misstatements Non-GAAP Financial Measures Non-Public Information OCIE Private Offerings Proxy Solicitations Public Offerings Regulation FD SEC Securities Regulation Social Media Testimonial Statements Websites

SEC Proposes Heightened Data and Reporting Rules for Funds and Advisers, Ponders New Rules on Derivatives and Leverage

At an open meeting of the Securities and Exchange Commission today, Chair Mary Jo White announced to enhance SEC reporting by investment companies and investment advisers. Data collection. The SEC proposed rules that...more

6/3/2015 - Data Collection Derivatives ETFs Investment Adviser Investment Funds Reporting Requirements SEC

No-Action Relief Granted for Three-Tier Fund Structure

The SEC’s Division of Investment Management on April 3, 2015, said that it will not recommend enforcement proceedings against an investment adviser that structures a three-tier fund allowing certain funds to invest in a...more

4/20/2015 - Fund of Funds Investment Adviser Investment Funds No-Action Relief SEC

SEC Division of Investment Management Cautions Advisers on Acceptance of Gifts and Entertainment

Fund compliance policies and procedures should address the receipt of gifts or entertainment by fund advisory personnel, according to guidance published by the SEC’s Division of Investment Management....more

4/20/2015 - Chief Compliance Officers Conditional Gifts Investment Adviser Investment Company Act of 1940 New Guidance Policies and Procedures SEC

Coming Soon: Regulations for Uniform Fiduciary Standard

In testimony before the House Committee on Financial Services on March 24, 2015, SEC Chair Mary Jo White said that she supports a uniform fiduciary standard of conduct for broker-dealers and investment advisers that provide...more

3/27/2015 - Asset Management Broker-Dealer Dodd-Frank Fiduciary Duty Investment Adviser Mary Jo White Proposed Standards SEC

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

SEC Charges Alt Fund Adviser with Custody Violations

The Securities and Exchange Commission on February 12, 2015, entered findings against an investment adviser to several alternative mutual funds for maintaining $247 million in cash collateral at broker-dealer counterparties...more

2/18/2015 - Alternative Investment Funds Broker-Dealer Custody Rule Enforcement Actions Investment Adviser SEC

SEC Reports the Result of its Cybersecurity Sweep of Broker-Dealers and Investment Advisers

An SEC cybersecurity sweep examination by the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) found that 88 percent of the broker-dealers (BDs) and 74 percent of the registered investment advisers (RIAs) they...more

2/13/2015 - Broker-Dealer Cyber Attacks Cybersecurity Data Protection Investment Adviser OCIE SEC

House Passes Bill to Ease Volcker Rule and other Regulatory Requirements

The U.S. House of Representatives on January 14, 2015, voted (271-154) to pass H.R. 37, the “Promoting Job Creation and Reducing Small Business Burdens Act.” If enacted, the bill, among other things, would extend the Volcker...more

1/19/2015 - Collateralized Loan Obligations Investment Adviser JOBS Act Pending Legislation SBIC Venture Capital Volcker Rule

SEC to Require Living Wills and Stress-Testing for Investment Advisers

In a speech on December 11, 2014, SEC Chair Mary Jo White announced three broad “proactive initiatives” to address the risks of “increasingly complex portfolio composition and operations” in the asset management industry. ...more

12/15/2014 - Asset Management Fund Managers Investment Adviser Living Will SEC Stress Tests

SEC Chair’s Agenda Provides Glimpse of New Rules to Come

The SEC offered a peek into what new rule proposals we can expect in the coming months. The sneak preview includes some eye openers, like proposed rules to require funds to adopt liquidity management programs and...more

12/8/2014 - Asset Management ETFs Exchange-Traded Products Investment Adviser Liquidity Risk Management Rule OMB Proposed Regulation Rulemaking Process SEC Stress Tests

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

SEC Staff Offers Guidance Regarding Investment Advisers and Proxy Advisory Firms

The SEC’s Division of Investment Management and Division of Corporation Finance published joint guidance on June 30, 2014 regarding investment advisers’ responsibilities in voting client proxies, and two exemptions from the...more

7/3/2014 - Investment Adviser Proxies Proxy Advisors Proxy Voting Guidelines SEC

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

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