Kelley A. Howes

Kelley A. Howes

Morrison & Foerster LLP

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Spreading Sunshine or Shining a Spotlight?

In a recent speech, Andrew Bowden, Director of the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) “spread sunshine” on private equity industry practices gathered through so-called “presence exams” of newly...more

5/13/2014 - Compliance Enforcement Actions OCIE Private Funds SEC

SEC Staff Offers Roadmap for Alternative Investment Due Diligence Processes

The SEC believes that investment advisers, including pension consultants, are increasingly recommending that their clients invest a portion of their portfolios in private alternative investment funds. In light of that trend,...more

2/12/2014 - Compliance Due Diligence Investors OCIE Risk Management SEC

SEC Compliance Outreach Program Reinforces Familiar Themes

Last week, key members of the SEC’s staff reinforced their expectation that CCOs and other gatekeepers should help the SEC with its core mission of protecting investors, promoting fair, orderly and efficient markets and...more

2/5/2014 - Compliance SEC

Another Bestseller: The SEC’s Examination Priorities for 2014

Following closely on the heels of FINRA’s publication of its examination priorities for 2014 (see our recent client alert), OCIE’s National Exam Program (NEP) released a summary of its 2014 priorities. OCIE’s priorities...more

1/15/2014 - Compliance Databases Dodd-Frank Enforcement FINRA NEP OCIE Third-Party Risk Whistleblowers

A Must Read: FINRA’s 2014 Exam Priorities

FINRA did not wait for any dust (or snow) to settle on the New Year before alerting the brokerage industry and the public about its regulatory and examination priorities for 2014. This year’s letter, issued earlier than ever...more

1/6/2014 - Algorithmic Trading Anti-Money Laundering Broker-Dealer Compliance Conflicts of Interest Crowdfunding Employer Liability Issues Enforcement FINRA High Frequency Trading Qualified Benefit Plans Recidivism

SEC: Adviser Violated Advisers Act by Charging Performance Fees to Non-Qualified Clients

A recent SEC enforcement action illustrates the challenge of complying with changing regulations, particularly for newly registered advisers. The SEC found that the adviser violated the prohibition against charging...more

1/2/2014 - Compliance Dodd-Frank Fees Investment Advisers Act of 1940 SEC

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update -- December 2013

In This Issue: Regulatory Updates - SEC Continues to Look at a Uniform Fiduciary Standard for Broker-Dealers and Investment Advisers; SEC Grants Unusual Exemptive Relief from Pay-to-Play “Time-Out” Provision;...more

12/11/2013 - Broker-Dealer Compliance Conflicts of Interest Directors Fiduciary Duty FINRA Investment Funds SEC

SEC’s Recent Actions Against Two Investment Advisers Raise Important Lessons for All Investment Advisers

Recently announced cases against two registered investment advisers and certain of their executives serve as timely reminders of where the SEC is focusing its attention. Although the SEC’s actions are based on alleged...more

12/3/2013 - Compliance Enforcement Actions Investment Adviser SEC

SEC Won’t Object To Aggregation of Certain Client Investments in Private Funds

In a Guidance Update published this week, the SEC’s Division of Investment Management said that it would not object if related investment advisors registered jointly with the SEC and operating a single advisory business...more

11/7/2013 - Aggregation Rules Compliance Investment Advisers Act of 1940 Private Funds SEC

Halloween Shivers: Frightening Times Ahead for RIAs?

Two Halloween announcements by securities regulators may frighten investment advisers. The October 31 statements from the SEC and the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) suggest that federal and...more

11/5/2013 - Compliance Dodd-Frank NASAA OCIE SEC

SEC’s Champ to Fund Directors: Let’s Work Together to Advance a Common Purpose

The Director of the SEC’s Division of Investment Management seeks a “successful collaboration” between fund directors and the SEC staff to further a common purpose: to protect investors....more

10/29/2013 - Compliance Directors Fund Managers SEC

Financial Fraud Law Report: October 2013 - Insider Trading in Mutual Funds: Do Traditional Theories Apply?

A federal court of appeals recently held out the possibility that insider trading prohibitions — at least under the classic theory — do not apply to mutual fund redemptions. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh...more

10/25/2013 - Chief Compliance Officers Compliance Fraud Insider Trading Mutual Funds Rule 10b-5 SEC Securities Exchange Act White Collar Crimes

SEC Sanctions Three More Investment Advisers for Compliance Violations

The SEC’s Compliance Program Initiative bore more enforcement fruit. SEC today sanctioned three investment advisory firms for repeatedly ignoring compliance problems. The Initiative targets firms that fail to address...more

10/24/2013 - Compliance Investment Adviser Sanctions SEC

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update -- October 2013

- Regulatory Updates: CFTC Adopts “Substituted Compliance” Approach for Registered Investment Companies that are Commodity Pools; SEC’s Final Rules on General Solicitation and Bad Actor Disqualification for Investment...more

10/24/2013 - Audits Bad Actors Broker-Dealer CFTC Commodity Pool Compliance Continuity of Enterprises Dodd-Frank Enforcement FINRA General Solicitation Investment Adviser JOBS Act PCAOB Private Funds Rule 506 Offerings SEC

SEC Enforcement Division to CCOs: We Are in This Together!

Stephen Cohen, the SEC’s Associate Director of Enforcement, tied robust compliance programs to enforcement “credits”. In remarks to compliance and ethics professionals at the annual conference of the Society of...more

10/15/2013 - Chief Compliance Officers Compliance Ethics Foreign Investment Investment Adviser SEC Whistleblowers

Giving the CCO Teeth: SEC Sanctions Portfolio Manager for Misleading CCO

The SEC brought its first action for misleading and obstructing the work of a CCO this week, finding that a portfolio manager deliberately altered documents and misled the firm’s CCO in an attempt to hide violations of the...more

8/29/2013 - Chief Compliance Officers Compliance Ethics Investment Company Act of 1940 Misrepresentation Portfolio Managers Sanctions SEC

CFTC Adopts “Substituted Compliance” Approach for Registered Investment Companies that Are Commodity Pools

In a dramatic change of course, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) adopted final rules that apply a “substituted compliance” approach for disclosure and compliance obligations of registered investment companies...more

8/15/2013 - CFTC Commodity Pool Compliance Disclosure Requirements Investment Funds Reporting Requirements SEC

SEC Sanctions Fund Trustees for Inadequate Disclosures and Failure to Follow Compliance Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged the trustees of two “turnkey” mutual fund trusts with causing untrue or misleading disclosures about their review of the funds’ advisory contracts. The Commission also...more

5/3/2013 - Chief Compliance Officers Compliance Duty to Disclose Sanctions SEC Trustees

FINRA Provides Early Guidance About Its Exam Priorities; Firms Should Take Notice

In its annual summary of regulatory and examination priorities, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) signaled that it will aggressively pursue market misconduct. The January 11, 2013 report follows closely on...more

1/16/2013 - Broker-Dealer Compliance Cybersecurity FINRA Investment Adviser Investors

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