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Financial Services Weekly News Roundup - March 2015 #4

Focus on Fiduciary Standards. In February the President’s Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) issued a Report on the Effects of Conflicted Investment Advice on Retirement Savings. In its conclusion, the Report estimated the...more

SEC Approves FINRA Rule Regarding Investigation and Verification of Registration Applicants

After seeking comments last fall, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently approved the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (“FINRA”) proposed rule governing member firms’ verification and investigation...more

SEC’s Limit on Retroactivity of Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Bounty Awards Is Reasonable, Second Circuit Holds

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals recently deferred to the SEC’s determination that a tipster who provided information to the Commission before July 21, 2010, the effective date of the Dodd-Frank Act, is not eligible to...more

Russian Legislation Update - 2 – 15 March 2015

In This Issue: - Civil Code Reform: contracts and obligations - New Development Bank BRICS - Employment/Foreign Citizens - Securities: bondholders; information disclosure - Excerpt from New Development Bank...more

Issuers Omit Proposals From Proxy Statements

As noted here, two issuers have omitted shareholder proposals from preliminary proxy statements where no-action letters from the SEC regarding omission of the proposals have been withdrawn. The blog suggests, within its...more

SEC No-Action Letter Permits Non-ERISA Retirement Plans to Issue Participant Fee Disclosures Without Violating Securities Laws

In a no-action letter dated February 18, 2015, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) extended relief from the application of Rule 482 of the Securities Act of 1933 to certain retirement plans that are exempt from...more

White Calls for SEC to Adopt Uniform Fiduciary Standard

SEC Chair Mary Jo White said Tuesday that the SEC needs to move forward on a uniform fiduciary standard for the financial industry, including brokers. Addressing the annual meeting of the Securities Industry and Financial...more

Study Finds Whistleblowers Increase Penalties of Regulatory Enforcement Actions

A recent academic paper found that whistleblower involvement in financial misrepresentation enforcement actions tends to increase (1) penalties against firms by an average of $77 million, (2) penalties against employees by an...more

TOO BIG TO FAIL 2: EMIR: "Too Big To Fail", Again?

This alert focuses on the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (or "EMIR" as it is better known) which was introduced as the equivalent of the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, to address a wide range of issues, many of which were...more

Two Former Capital One Employees Who Traded On Customer Data, Consent to Preliminary Injunction

Insider trading cases are built on two basic theories. Under the traditional, classic model, a corporate insider uses material, non-public information obtained from his or her employer to trade in shares of the company –...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume X, Issue 10

In This Issue: - NYSE Amends "Late Filer Rule" - CFTC Responds to District Court's Remand Order on Certain Cross-Border Swaps Rules - Delaware Chancery Court Addresses Proper Purpose for Inspection...more

Labor Department issues procedures for handling SOX whistleblower complaints

The United States Department of Labor has issued a Final Rule regarding procedures for handling employee whistleblower retaliation claims under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX) and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and...more

SEC Issues Rule 482 No-Action Relief to Non-ERISA 403(b), 457 Plans

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a no-action letter extending relief to certain investment-related information provided to participants in non-ERISA 403(b), 457(b), and other qualified participant-directed...more

Blog: Senate Bill Introduced To Raise Rule 701 Disclosure Threshold

Senators Pat Toomey (R., PA) and Mark Warner (D., VA) have introduced Senate Bill 576, the ‘‘Encouraging Employee Ownership Act.’’ The bill would require the SEC, within 60 days after enactment, to raise the threshold in...more

Top Ten Ethics & Compliance Predictions and Recommendations for 2015

Get the inside track on the key ethics and compliance industry trends that will impact your business in 2015—and get the resources you need to help you plan for the year ahead—in our annual Top Ten Predictions and...more

In Case You Missed It - Interesting Items for Corporate Counsel - March 2015

It's difficult to discern “trends” from reactions to date on proxy access proposals, but here are some data points: Three companies, including two on the NY Comptroller’s 75-company target list have adopted...more

Is The SEC’s Notice Of Internet Availability Of Proxy Materials Form Gender Biased?

The idea that men won’t ask for directions is a staple of many jokes.  I don’t know whether this is fact or urban myth.  However, a few years back the Princeton University Press published an entire book on the subject. ...more

Say-On-Pay Vote Did Not Create Disclosure Obligation

In Liang v. Berger, the plaintiff in a derivative action alleged the officers and directors of ARAID Pharmaceuticals failed to disclose material negative information about a drug under development in a timely manner. Among...more

DOL Issues its Final Rule for SOX Whistleblower Complaints

On March 5, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor issued a Final Rule implementing protections for employees of securities companies and their subsidiaries, as well as employees of national credit-rating agencies. The Final...more

Monthly Benefits Alert - February 2015

Health & Wellness Plans - Anthem Data Breach Requires Plan Sponsor Attention - On January 29, 2015, Anthem Inc., one of the largest managed health care companies in the country, disclosed that the sensitive...more

ISS Releases Four Sets of FAQs, Glass Lewis Provides an Update, and FASB and IASB Make Certain Decisions Relevant to Equity...

Proxy advisory firms Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) and Glass Lewis have both released updates to their policies that outline how they will form recommendations to shareholders on how they should vote on governance,...more

Sentencing of CEO Highlights Importance of a Good "Tone at the Top"

Highlighting the peril of unethical business leadership, a judge recently sentenced the former CEO of a bankrupt cash-management firm to 14 years in prison for defrauding more than 70 customers of more than $665 million...more

SEC Proposes Dodd-Frank Hedging Policy Disclosure Rules

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently released long-awaited proposed rules, as mandated by Section 955 of the Dodd-Frank Act, that would require a public company to disclose whether the company permits its...more

Tax Policy Update

NUMBER OF THE WEEK: $42,268. The projected average taxable income of all tax returns in 2015, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation’s Feb. 27 report on “Fairness and Tax Policy.” The report also projects that the top...more

Three Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Anti-Retaliation Claims Fail

Courts recently issued three opinions on the whistleblower anti-retaliation provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act. In Murray v. UBS Securities, LLC, Mr. Murray claimed he was terminated because he refused to skew his...more

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