Lloyd S. Harmetz

Lloyd S. Harmetz

Morrison & Foerster LLP

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FINRA Proposes Initial Round of Amendments to Communications Rules

In May 2016, FINRA filed with the SEC proposed revisions to its communications rules that include a few substantive revisions to existing rules, ease some burdensome filing requirements, and leave the door open for future...more

6/7/2016 - Amended Regulation Disclosure Requirements Educational Communications Rule Filing Requirements FINRA Investment Companies Investor Protection Rule 2210 SEC

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 7, Issue 6

Structured Notes Offered on an Agency Basis - In our last issue, we discussed the potential impact of the Department of Labor’s new rules on sales of structured products. In that article, we discussed some of the...more

5/31/2016 - Comment Period Debt Deposit Accounts DOL FDIC FINRA Offerings Recordkeeping Requirements Regulation S-K Retirement Plan SEC Structured Financial Products Underwriting

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 7, Issue 5

Electronic Structured Product Systems and FINRA’s Robo-Advisor Report - In a prior issue of this publication, we wrote about electronic structured note issuance platforms, and how these might be affected by U.S....more

5/2/2016 - Broker-Dealer European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) Financial Adviser FINRA OCC Regulation S-K Retail Investors SEC

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update - April 2016

Regulation - Department of Labor Issues Fiduciary Regulations Under ERISA - The Department of Labor (DOL) issued its long-anticipated final regulation (the “Regulation”) defining who is a fiduciary as a result of...more

4/21/2016 - Broker-Dealer CFTC Crowdfunding Derivatives DOL ERISA FINRA SEC

A Lofty Concept: Disclosure Effectiveness

Even before the JOBS Act had been proposed, policymakers focused on the downturn in the number of initial public offerings (IPOs) speculated that the burdensome disclosure requirements applicable to public companies were...more

4/19/2016 - Corporate Governance Disclosure Requirements IPO JOBS Act SEC

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 7, Issue 4

Structured Product Sales at Bank Branches: Networking- Arrangement Rules - Many broker-dealers engaged in the structured products industry are affiliates of large U.S. banks, which have a significant customer footprint. ...more

4/1/2016 - Banks Broker-Dealer Financial Services Industry FINRA High-Yield Markets SEC Structured Financial Products

SEC Imposes Fine for Improper Research Report

In March 2016, the SEC entered into a settlement agreement with a U.S. broker-dealer, which initiated research coverage of an issuer after being invited by the issuer to participate as an underwriter for that issuer’s planned...more

3/28/2016 - Broker-Dealer Fines Offerings Prospectus SEC Underwriting

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 7, Issue 3

Structured Product Sales at Bank Branches: Networking- Arrangement Rules - Many broker-dealers engaged in the structured products industry are affiliates of large U.S. banks, which have a significant customer footprint....more

3/3/2016 - Broker-Dealer Corporate Communications FINRA High-Yield Markets Investors Recruitment Policies SEC Structured Financial Products

FINRA Approves Price Disclosure Proposal for Debt Securities

On February 26, 2016, FINRA issued a press release (http://www.finra.org/newsroom/2016/finra-approves-enhanced-price-disclosure-retail-investors-fixed-income-securities) announcing that its Board of Governors approved the...more

3/2/2016 - Debt Securities Disclosure Requirements FINRA SEC TRACE

SEC Issues Investor Alert on Crowdfunding

With the May 2016 effective date of the new crowdfunding rules approaching, the SEC is attempting to help prepare the market. On February 16, 2016, the SEC’s Office of Investor Education and Advocacy issued an investor...more

2/18/2016 - Crowdfunding Early Stage Companies Fraud Investors Offerings SEC

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 7, Issue 2

Is There a Standard Form of Rule 144A Representation Letter? - My file of Rule 144A representation letters has been growing fatter, and I‘m not sure why. I would have hoped that by now there would be just one great...more

2/12/2016 - Banking Sector Broker-Dealer Corporate Issuers Disclosure Requirements ERISA Federal Reserve FINRA Institutional Investors IRS Market Basket Regulation S-K Representations and Warranties Rule 144A Rule 15a-6 SEC Structured Finance Structured Financial Products TLAC

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 7, Issue 1

T+2 Settlement and Structured Notes - Introduction - In December 2015, the “T+2 Industry Steering Committee” published its Implementation Playbook. The Playbook is intended to provide, among other things, a...more

1/18/2016 - Equity Markets FINRA OCIE Regulatory Agenda SEC Structured Finance Structured Financial Products

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 6, Issue 9

ESMA Final Report on Complex Debt Instruments and Structured Deposits - On 26 November 2015, the European Securities and Markets Authority (“ESMA”) published its Final Report on its “Guidelines on complex debt...more

12/15/2015 - Banking Sector Derivatives DOL EU EURIBOR European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) Exchange-Traded Products Fiduciary Duty FINRA MiFID II Regulatory Agenda SEC Structured Finance

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update - November 2015

Regulation - OCIE Cautions Advisers on Outsourcing Compliance Activities: In a Risk Alert dated November 9, 2015, the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) said it found that outsourced...more

11/18/2015 - AIFMD Anti-Money Laundering CFTC Compliance Cybersecurity Enforcement Actions FINRA Investment Management Investor Protection OCIE Outsourcing SEC Swap Dealers Swing Pricing Volcker Rule

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 6, Issue 7

Structured Products Offerings and Research Reports: Introduction - Structured products are sold by broker-dealers, many of which are affiliates of large investment banks. The equity research group of the same...more

11/6/2015 - Binary Options Broker-Dealer Disclosure Requirements Equity Research Rule ETNs FINRA Global Systemically Important Financial Institutions (GSIFI) License Agreements Offerings Sanctions SEC Structured Financial Products Websites

Cybersecurity, Round 2: OCIE Announces Areas of Focus for Cybersecurity Examinations

On September 15, 2015, OCIE issued a risk alert relating to its new cybersecurity examination initiative. This is the second round of these examinations, and the alert provides a detailed look at OCIE’s current areas of...more

9/17/2015 - Broker-Dealer Cyber Incident Reporting Cyber Threats Cybersecurity Data Privacy Data Protection Data Security FINRA Hackers Investment Adviser OCIE Risk Alert Risk Management SEC SEC Examination Priorities Third-Party Training

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 6, Issue 5

OCIE Issues Risk Alert Relating to Structured Note Sales - Earlier this year, the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (the “OCIE”) indicated branch offices and structured products as two of its...more

9/1/2015 - Broker-Dealer Compensation Standards Derivatives EDGAR Endangered Species Act (ESA) EU Financial Institutions FINRA Internal Communications IRS Loss Contingencies NASD OCIE Risk Alert Risk Management SEC Structured Finance Training UK Underwriting

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 6, Issue 3

In This Issue: - The National Senior Investor Initiative - SEC Commissioner Addresses Structured Notes - The SEC Defines “Voting Equity Securities” Under the Rule 506(d) Bad Actor Disqualification...more

5/4/2015 - Elder Abuse Elder Issues Financial Institutions FINRA OCIE Rule 506(d) SEC Structured Financial Products

Structured Thoughts - Volume 6 , Issue 2 - March 2015

In This Issue: - FCA Publishes Thematic Review on Structured Product Development and Governance - EU Commission Review of Prospectus Directive - SEC Issues Investor Bulletin Relating to Structured Notes -...more

3/16/2015 - Canada EU European Commission False Claims Act (FCA) Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) FINRA Prospectus SEC Structured Financial Products Toronto Stock Exchange

SEC Proposes Amendments to Registration Requirements

In December 2014, the SEC proposed amendments to revise the rules related to the thresholds for registration, termination of registration, and suspension of reporting under Section 12(g) of the Exchange Act. These proposals...more

1/2/2015 - Bank Holding Company Banks JOBS Act Proposed Amendments Registration SEC

Structured Thoughts: News for the financial services community, Volume 5, Issue 9

In This Issue: - What to Expect in 2015 - EU Regulatory Agenda: Into 2015 - FINRA Issues Report Relating to its Communication Rules - Structured Product Offerings and RIAs - The SEC, Investment Funds and...more

12/24/2014 - Banking Sector Banks Derivatives EU Financial Institutions Financial Regulatory Reform FINRA Investment Adviser Investment Funds SEC Structured Financial Products

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

Structured Thoughts: Volume 5, Issue 7 - November 11, 2014

In This Issue: - Index Changes and Successor Indices: Avoiding Delisting From The NYSE Arca - EU PRIIPS Regulation Expected to Come Into Force - UK Review of the Fixed Income, Currency and Commodities...more

11/12/2014 - ETNs EU Financial Regulatory Reform FINRA NYSE SEC Structured Financial Products UK

Structured Thoughts: Volume 5, Issue 4 - May 30, 2014

In This Issue: - No More KIDding Around: European Parliament Approves PRIIPs Regulation - FINRA Amends Rule 5110 to Exempt Certain Collective Investment Vehicles from Its Filing Requirements - The Time for the...more

7/15/2014 - Compliance EU Financial Regulatory Reform FINRA Foreign Investment Investors SEC

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