Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

News & Analysis as of

SEC Complaint: How To Create A Manipulation Vehicle

Microcap fraud has long been a focus of SEC enforcement. Many of the cases start with a public shell followed by a reverse merger in which the promoters end up with large portions of the stock. The transaction culminated with...more

The DOL's New Fiduciary Rules for Retirement Investment Advice

After years of debate and speculation, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued its final package of rules to regulate individuals and entities that provide investment advice to retirement plans and IRA investors. The DOL’s...more

Public Mining of Securities Regulatory Big Data

An article in this weekend’s Wall Street Journal called for FINRA to make the database underlying its BrokerCheck® system (of reports on stockbroker registration and disciplinary history) more widely available for data mining...more

Bridging the Week - April 2016 #4

Swap Execution Facility Alleges in Lawsuit That Banks Conspired to Prevent Its Success: The TeraExchange, a swaps execution facility registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and related entities, brought a...more

Broker Compensation-Disclosure Rule Approved by the SEC

It is not uncommon for registered representatives to change broker-dealers over the course of their career. In most cases, their customers will typically switch firms as well, as they follow their representative to wherever...more

FINRA Targets AML Programs and “Culture of Compliance” as 2016 Enforcement Priority, Particularly for High-Risk Broker/Dealers

Under Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) authorization, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) is “responsible for regulating (1) all securities firms that do business with the public[,]” (2) key stock...more

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

FINRA Proposes to Delay Further the Implementation Date of its New Debt Research Rule

On April 20, 2016, FINRA proposed delaying further the implementation date of its new debt research rule (Rule 2422) until July 16, 2016. Rule 2422 was set to take effect on April 22, 2016, after the implementation date was...more

Cybersecurity Compliance Just Got Tougher

Companies need specific, well-executed plans to meet growing demands of federal and state agencies. While cybersecurity risks have increased, government regulation has traditionally lagged behind. Recently, some...more

Investment Management Update - April 2016

Below is a summary of recent investment management developments that affect registered investment companies, private equity funds, hedge funds, investment advisers, and others in the investment management...more

Ketchum Clarifies How FINRA Will Assess a Firm’s Culture of Compliance

In an April 15, 2016 speech to the Brookings Institution, FINRA CEO Richard G. Ketchum addressed the fundamental question of whether the equity markets are sufficiently fair, flexible, and efficient to encourage the...more

"SEC Extends Comment Period on Proposed FINRA Pay-to-Play Rule "

On March 29, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed an order instituting proceedings (the Order) intended to determine whether to approve or disapprove Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)...more

Shopping for Startups – SEC Offers Additional Guidance for Intermediary Crowdfunding Portals

I previously wrote about the new rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) allowing startups to utilize crowdfunding platforms to sell an equity stake in their business to investors in exchange for working...more

Registration of Associated Persons with Algorithmic Trading Responsibilities

On April 7, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) approved the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's (“FINRA”) proposal to amend NASD Rule 1032 (Categories of Representative Registration) to require...more

Fifth Circuit: Diversity Jurisdiction Over FINRA Award Based on Demand

The Fifth Circuit Bar Association’s summary reports: “Appellants were investors who suffered financial losses as a result of R. Allen Stanford’s Ponzi scheme. In their arbitration complaint, they sought $80 million in...more

The SEC Approves a FINRA Rule Amendment Requiring Registration of Associated Persons Who Design or Develop Algorithmic Trading...

On April 7, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved amendments to NASD Rule 1032(f) which will require registration as Securities Traders of associated persons who are primarily responsible for the design,...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume XI, Issue 14

BROKER-DEALER - SEC Approves FINRA’s Proposed Expansion of Supplement Schedule for Derivatives and Off-Balance Sheet Items - On April 5, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority released Regulatory Notice 16-11...more

FINRA Reports on Robo-Advisors

What is the appropriate level of regulatory oversight for a robo-advisor? As federal agencies struggle with the question, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) published a new report reminding companies offering...more

Congress Moves to Expand Definition of “Accredited Investor” Under Regulation D

In an era where Congress and the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) have been working to break down barriers to investment and equity development, it only makes sense a new bill currently wending its way through the...more

DOL Issues Long-Awaited Final Regulations Defining 'Fiduciary' and Related PTEs

On April 6, 2016, the DOL issued long-awaited final regulations that define who is an investment advice fiduciary for purposes of the ERISA, along with coordinating prohibited transaction exemptions. These rules largely track...more

Private Secondary Markets and Rule 15c2-11

SEC Concerns with the “Piggyback” Exception of Rule 15c2-11 - Rule 15c2-11 (“Rule 15c2-11”) under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), sets forth procedures for the submission and...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume XI, Issue 13

BROKER-DEALER - FINRA Proposes Amendment to Transactions in Exchange-Traded Managed Fund Shares Rule - On March 29, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission a...more

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

SEC Pumps the Breaks on the Adoption of FINRA’s Proposed Pay-to-Play Rule

We’ve all been there before – charging headlong down the interstate at a few (or more than a few) miles per hour over the speed limit, when we suddenly come upon a speed trap conveniently tucked into a service road in the...more

Heard at the 2016 SIFMA Conference

Recently, attorneys from K&L Gates’ Government Enforcement practice group attended the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association’s (“SIFMA”) Compliance and Legal Society Annual Seminar. We wanted to share with you...more

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