News & Analysis as of

Heightened Supervision of Branch Offices — Tips for the Coming Year

In recent years, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) have heightened their expectations of what constitutes a “comprehensive” branch self-inspection program. Firms...more

2014 Proskauer Hedge Funds and Other Private Funds Annual Review

This year we saw a flurry of regulatory activity targeting investment advisers and hedge funds, private equity funds and other private funds (collectively, private funds). The following annual review is a summary of some of...more

November 2014: White Collar Litigation Update

The Future of the Department of Justice’s High Visibility Offshore Tax Evasion Initiative. On August 29, 2013, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) Tax Division announced the Program for Non-Prosecution Agreements...more

SEC Releases 2014 Annual Report to Congress on the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program

By all accounts, 2014 was a year of tremendous success for the SEC’s Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program. According to its 2014 Annual Report to Congress on the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program, the SEC paid nine whistleblower...more

Higher FCPA risks for mergers and acquisitions? Opinion Release 14-02 and your growing business – three steps

The Department of Justice has announced that it would take “no action” against a multinational corporation in connection with its acquisition of a foreign corporation with significant record-keeping deficiencies and a history...more

Former SEC Chairman Roderick Hills And The FCPA

Roderick Hills, who passed away at the end of last month, served as Chairman of the SEC through one if its most turbulent periods – the birth of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. When Mr. Hills became Chairman in 1975 the...more

Atlanta Burns – the Bio-Rad FCPA Enforcement Action – Part III

On this date in 1864, the Union Army phase of the destruction of Atlanta began. While most Southerners credit Union General William T. Sherman with the burning of Atlanta, it was, in reality, Confederate General John Bell...more

Proposed “Fair Fund” for CR Intrinsic Case Stirs Dustup among SEC’s Commissioners

In the right kind of enforcement action, the SEC can take the money it’s generated and set up what’s called a Fair Fund to redistribute that money to harmed investors. But what is the right kind of case? This procedure was...more

SEC’s Champ: Staff to Focus on Alt Fund Risk Disclosures

The Division of Investment Management again has turned its attention to alternative mutual funds, this time ensuring that they adequately disclose risks to retail investors. ...more

Financial Regulatory Developments Focus - November 2014 #2

In this issue: - Bank Prudential Regulation & Regulatory Capital - Compensation - Consumer Protection - Derivatives - Enforcement - Financial Services - Funds -...more

Crowd-funding Site Named In SEC Proceeding

Raising capital through crowd-funding is one of the key provisions of the JOBS Act. It is supposed to facilitate raising small amounts of capital for start-up operations. An off-shore crowd-funding site that sold unregistered...more

SEC Introduces “Control Person” Liability as Enforcement Action Weapon in Claim Against Municipal Officer for Misleading Bond...

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently settled the first securities fraud charges brought against a municipal official alleging “control person” status under the federal securities laws. The SEC’s settlement...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume IX, Issue 44

In this issue: - SEC Sanctions 10 Companies for Disclosure Failures Surrounding Financing Deals and Stock Dilution - Delaware Court of Chancery Rejects Entire Fairness Review in Absence of Conflicted...more

The SEC and the DMV

“The SEC Should Copy the DMV” is the title of an article published in the New York Times by Joseph S. Fichera recently. The article focuses on the use of corporate fines, questioning whether they are effective: “The SEC and...more

Repeated Violations of the Custody Rule Result in SEC Administrative Action

On October 29, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced an administrative proceeding against a registered investment adviser, its principals and its chief compliance and operating officer for violating...more

Senator Blumenthal Urges SEC To Investigate Fee-Shifting Charter Provisions

Yesterday, Senator Richard Blumenthal wrote a letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission asking that the “Commission protect investors and America’s capital markets from a serious and imminent threat.” According to the...more

SEC Snares 10 for 8-K Violations

The SEC settled actions with ten companies for alleged Form 8-K violations. The investigation centered on failure to file Form 8-K when shares of common stock are sold in transactions that are not registered with the SEC...more

SEC Issues Preliminary Denial Notices for Two Nontransparent Actively Managed ETF Applications

In 2008, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC” or “Commission”) approved the first actively managed exchange-traded funds (“ETFs”). The exemptive orders for those ETFs—and all active ETF exemptive orders since—have...more

The SEC’s Broken Windows Program – A Success?

Broken windows entered a new chapter. Previously, the program focused on the custody rule, Rule 105 and the filing of certain forms such as Form 4 and Schedule 13D. The point is to create SEC omnipresence – the cop on the...more

Three Observations From the SEC’s Settlements with Thirteen Municipal Dealers Over Below-Denomination Sales of Puerto Rico Bonds

On November 3, 2014, the SEC announced settlements with thirteen different registered municipal securities dealers in connection with sales of non-investment grade bonds issued by Puerto Rico in 2014. The settlements...more

Study: Does The Existence Of Whistleblowers In Enforcement Actions Mean Greater Penalties?

According to an academic study published on October 6, 2014 by Andrew C. Hall, Gerald S. Martin, Nathan Y. Sharp, and Jaron H. Wilde, the presence of whistleblowers may have a meaningful impact on the outcomes of enforcement...more

Exchange – International Newsletter: Issue 24 – October 2014

WELCOME - DLA Piper’s Financial Services International Regulatory team welcomes you to the twenty-fourth edition of ‘Exchange – International’ – an international newsletter designed to keep you informed of regulatory...more

When the Whistle Blows, What Follows?

Real estate investment trust American Realty Capital Properties (“ARCP”) recently announced the preliminary findings of an Audit Committee investigation into accounting irregularities and the resulting resignation of its...more

SEC – DOJ Resolve FCPA Charges With Bio-Rad Labs

The SEC and the DOJ resolved FCPA charges with California based life science research and clinical diagnostics company Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. The charges stem from bribes paid in Russia, Vietnam and Thailand. The company...more

SEC Sanctions Auditor, Should Make Small Issuers Think Twice

The SEC brought a settled administrative action against an auditor on October 24th. Often I’ll take a case like this and write something about it to warn other auditors (or investment advisers or broker-dealers, or whomever)...more

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