Broker-Dealer

News & Analysis as of

SEC Obtains Settlement for Violations of Registration Rules and “Layering”

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced a settlement with two brokerage firms and certain of their executives for improper compensation-sharing and “layering,” a strategy in which a trader places and later...more

SEC’s OCIE Announces Cybersecurity Examinations Of Broker-Dealers And Registered Investment Advisers

The SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations, or OCIE, previously announced that its 2014 Examination Priorities included a focus on technology, including cybersecurity preparedness. OCIE has issued a Risk...more

SEC Issues Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Amendments to the Broker-Dealer Reporting Rule

The Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Trading and Markets has issued frequently asked questions (FAQ) concerning the amendments adopted on July 30, 2013, to Rule 17a-5 (Broker-Dealer Reporting Rule) of the...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume IX, Issue 15

In this issue: - SEC Issues New FAQs on Conflict Minerals - SEC Issues Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Amendments to the Broker-Dealer Reporting Rule - FINRA Requests Comment on Rules Regarding...more

A Blast from the Past: The SEC Fines Investment Adviser/Broker-Dealer for Breakpoint Violations

In a case reminiscent of the “breakpoint” enforcement actions brought 10 years ago by securities regulators, the SEC recently found that a registered investment adviser and broker-dealer overcharged clients because it...more

Structured Thoughts: Volume 5, Issue 3 - April 9, 2014

In This Issue: - The SEC Issues Its Long-Awaited Sweep Letter on ETNs - FINRA Proposes Amendments to Communication Rules – Relief from Filing for Certain FWPs - Comprehensive Surveillance Sharing Agreements -...more

SEC Sanctions Non-U.S. Firm for Failing to Register as Broker-Dealer/Adviser

The SEC charged a non-U.S. multi-national financial institution with a large U.S. presence with violating federal securities laws by providing brokerage and investment advisory services to U.S. clients without registering...more

9th Circuit Holds Issuer Is Investment Bank’s “Customer” And “Actions and Proceedings” Include Arbitrations

In 2005 and 2006, the biggest little city in the world (aka Reno, Nevada) issued approximately $211 million in securities employing Goldman, Sachs & Co. as its sole underwriter and broker-dealer. The financing didn’t work...more

Registration Requirements Eased for Brokers and Financial Advisors in M&A Transactions

We are often asked whether a financial advisor or business broker may advise on mergers and acquisitions and similar business combinations of a privately held company in a stock transaction without having to register as a...more

FINRA Invites Public Comment on a Modified Regulatory Scheme for Broker-Dealers Specializing in M&A and Corporate Finance

FINRA is seeking public comment on a much needed overhaul of the regulatory requirements for broker-dealers who specialize in M&A and corporate finance. The overhaul would be accomplished by creating a new category of...more

SEC Approves New FINRA Supervision Rules

The current rulebook of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority consists of FINRA rules, legacy National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) rules (that apply to all FINRA member firms) and rules incorporated from...more

Amendments to Uniform Branch Office Registration Form

Broker-dealers are required to use the Branch Office Registration Form (Form BR) to register their branch offices with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, the New York Stock Exchange and participating states via the...more

Financial Regulatory Developments Focus - March 18, 2014

In this issue: - Derivatives - Compensation - Regulatory Capital - Financial Market Infrastructure - Financial Services - Consumer Protection - Enforcement - People - Events -...more

FINRA Proposes to Amend Rules 2210 and 2214

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority filed proposed rule changes with the Securities and Exchange Commission to amend FINRA Rules 2210 and 2214. Rule 2210, which governs broker-dealers’ communications with the public,...more

Jefferies Settles Market Crisis Failure To Supervise Actions With SEC/USAO

Registered broker-dealer Jefferies LLC resolved failure to supervise charges tied to the market crisis with the SEC and the U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut. The Commission settled with the broker in an...more

SEC Issues FAQs on Financial Responsibility Rules

The guidance addresses expense arrangements, buy-in procedures, free credit balances, sweep programs, and bulk transfers, among other things. On March 6, the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued...more

SEC Issues No-Action Relief to Broker Dealers from Financial Responsibility Rule 15c3-3 Amendments

On February 26, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Trading and Markets granted two separate requests for no-action relief, one submitted by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA)...more

Business Brokers Get “No-Action” Relief from SEC

Business intermediaries who facilitate the purchase or sale of privately-held businesses for a success fee based on the size of the completed acquisition may no longer have to be concerned about registering as broker-dealers...more

Margin Call: The Basics of the US Margin Regulations

Your issuer client is getting ready to launch a high-yield debt offering. When you get to the office and check your messages, you learn that your client has a couple of questions about the representation in the purchase...more

SEC Action Targets Unregistered Cross-Border Brokerage, Investment Advisory Services

On February 21, the SEC released an administrative order against a foreign financial institution that provided cross-border securities services to thousands of U.S. clients. The SEC asserted that the institution’s employees...more

SEC Issues Relief from Certain Financial Responsibility Rule Requirements

In two separate letters, the SEC staff addresses operational concerns raised by broker-dealers in connection with sweep program authorizations and the use of certain nonaffiliated U.S. branches of foreign banks....more

MSRB Proposes Municipal Advisor Supervision Rule

Yesterday, the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) issued a request for comment on a supervision rule for municipal advisors, draft Rule G-44. The proposed rule contains similar concepts to Rule G-27, the MSRB’s...more

SEC Recently Issued a No-Action Letter Exempting Private Company M&A Brokers From Registration With the SEC as Broker-Dealers

The staff of the Division of Trading and Markets of the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") recently issued a No-Action Letter[1] that should reduce significantly the registration burdens upon certain brokers and...more

SEC No-Action Letter Allows Certain Kinds of “M&A Brokers” to Avoid Broker-Dealer Registration Under the Exchange Act

On January 31, 2014, the SEC’s Division of Trading and Markets issued a significant no-action letter permitting the involvement of “M&A Brokers” in business acquisition transactions involving privately-held companies. The...more

SEC Offers Relief to M&A Brokers

The Office of the Chief Counsel of the Division of Trading and Markets of the Securities and Exchange Commission recently issued an important “No-Action” Letter providing regulatory relief for participants in certain mergers...more

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