Labor & Employment General Business Securities

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Defend Trade Secrets Act — Implications for Private Funds

On May 11, 2016, the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) became law. The DTSA provides trade-secret protections on the federal level that are similar to those available through the Uniform Trade Secrets Act (UTSA)...more

Treasury Removes a Reporting Trap for Section 83(b) Elections

Taxpayers who receive property as payment for performing services are generally taxable on the value of the property received in the year of receipt. Section 83 may allow such taxation to be deferred when the property...more

OSC Whistleblower Program Launched

On July 16, 2016, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) announced the launch of its Office of the Whistleblower. This is the first paid whistleblower program by a securities regulator in Canada. Subject to eligibility...more

SEC Examiners Focused on Fund Share Class Conflicts of Interest

OCIE recently published a Risk Alert announcing that it will examine the potential conflict of interest created by registered investment advisers being financially incentivized to recommend certain share classes to clients....more

Pension Income Stream Products Worry FINRA

Some SEC-registered broker-dealers connect individuals wishing to cash in on their future pension payments with potential investors in such income streams. In April, the Financial Industry Regulatory Association (FINRA)...more

An Analysis of Nasdaq’s “Golden Leash” Disclosure Rule

On July 1, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved, on an accelerated basis, Nasdaq’s new Rule 5250(b)(3), which requires Nasdaq-listed U.S. companies to publicly disclose any arrangements or agreements...more

Private Investment Fund Managers and Other Investment Advisers May Be Affected by the U.S. Department of Labor’s New Fiduciary...

On April 6, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued its highly anticipated final rule addressing when a person is considered to be a fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and the...more

Veil Parted on SEC Whistleblower Award

Early this year, the SEC announced it had paid a whistleblower award of “more than $700,000” to a company “outsider” who “conducted a detailed analysis” that led to a successful enforcement action against the company....more

Nasdaq Adopts “Golden Leash” Director Compensation Disclosure Requirement

The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC (Nasdaq) has adopted a new rule that will require each Nasdaq-listed company to publicly disclose compensation or other payments by third parties to any current director or nominee for director in...more

Pension Fund Health-Check Required

The recent furore over the collapse of high street retailer BHS has caused fierce debate over whether companies, or their ultimate owners, are responsible for the upkeep of a pension plan. For private equity, the debate has...more

SEC Sanctions Unregistered EB-5 Investments Broker

We previously warned that some individuals involved with arranging EB-5 investments may be required to register as broker-dealers (see "Immigrant Investor Program Raises SEC Broker Registration Issues" in the Summer 2014...more

The Whistle Blows Again: SEC Pays Second Largest Whistleblower Bounty Award

On June 9, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (‘SEC”) awarded the second largest whistleblower bounty – $17 million – granted under the Dodd-Frank whistleblower rules to date. Previously, the highest whistleblower...more

The Department of Labor’s 2016 Final Fiduciary and Conflict of Interest Regulations: The Principal Transactions Exemption

This post continues our examination of the Department of Labor’s suite of final fiduciary and conflict of interest regulations. Our prior posts discussed the newly expanded definition of “investment advice fiduciary” and the...more

“Call to Action” May Create Fiduciary Liability under ERISA

Traditional investment advisers, as well as broker-dealers, insurance brokers, banks, and employers, are abuzz with questions and concerns relating to the final regulation issued by the Department of Labor (DOL) on April 8,...more

Financial Services Weekly News - June 2016

Regulatory Developments - SEC Staff Updates 2014 Money Market Fund Reform FAQs - On May 23, the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Division of Investment Management published additional...more

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

More Egregious Aggregation Under ERISA in the Sun Capital Partners Case? The District Court Goes Down Yet Another Road

The recent opinion by the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts on remand from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in the Sun Capital Partners case may be troubling to private equity funds and...more

Securities Industry Employment Arbitration

In the securities industry, the majority of all employment disputes are resolved through binding arbitration. This mandatory arbitration system is managed through a unique industry forum under the self-regulatory entity...more

DOL Fiduciary Rule Re-Makes Retail IRA Advice

Congress voted this week to de-rail the Department of Labor’s sweeping fiduciary-duty suite of rule-making, but doesn’t have the votes to override the President’s threatened veto....more

Citadel, a $24-Billion Hedge Fund, Seeks Whistleblower Status

Just a few months after announcing the first-ever award to an outside whistleblower, federal authorities may be on the verge of expanding the reach of whistleblower incentives even further. Last week, Citadel, the...more

Here’s a Tip: “Substantial and Important Contributions” to Pre-Existing SEC Investigations Can Pay Off For Whistleblowers

In a move evidencing the SEC’s continued commitment to its whistleblower program, the Commission announced on Friday that it has awarded a whistleblower over $3.5 million for providing information that did not lead to a new...more

Fifth Circuit Decision Includes Important Holdings for ESOP Fiduciaries

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed on May 3, 2016, the holdings of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi on numerous issues involving the sale of closely held stock from a...more

US Department of Labor’s Fiduciary Rule Introduces a Brave New World

Final rule reflects some concessions, but its broad scope and compliance costs will cause financial services advisers to re-evaluate their business models. On April 6, 2016, the US Department of Labor (the DOL) released...more

Final DOL Fiduciary Rule – Q&As for Employers and Plan Sponsors on Investment Education

On April 6, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (Department) issued its final rule defining who is a fiduciary of an employee benefit plan under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) as a result of giving...more

SEC Probes Retirement Advice

The SEC has been sending lengthy sweep examination letters to many registered investment advisers (RIAs) and broker-dealers, requesting a broad variety of information regarding retirement plan advice. A form of the...more

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