Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

News & Analysis as of

This Week In Securities Litigation

Morgan Stanley settled another case with the Commission this week. This time its brokerage unit resolved an action centered on the improper sales of ETFs, admitting the facts in the Order. ...more

Investor Advisory Committee Meeting Agenda Announced

The SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee will hold a public meeting on March 9, 2017, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:55 a.m. The meeting’s agenda includes a discussion regarding SEC investor research initiatives, the FINRA 2016 Financial...more

Thou Shalt Not Exploit Thine Elders

SEC approves FINRA rule designed to protect seniors and other specified adults from financial exploitation. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved a new rule proposed by the Financial Industry...more

ESMA Publishes Report on Distributed Ledger Technology

On February 7, 2017, the European Securities and Markets Authority (“ESMA”) released a Report on Distributed Ledger Technology (“DLT”) (also known as “blockchain” technology) Applied to Securities Markets (the “Report”) that...more

First Circuit Affirms District Court’s Confirmation Of Arbitration Award Under The “Look-Through” Test

The background of this matter could be found here. In sum, Plaintiffs Dr. Luis Ortiz-Espinosa and his wife Maritza Soto-Garcia, the conjugal partnership they formed, Espinosa-Soto, and Luis Ortiz-Espinosa, as trustee of...more

OCIE and FINRA Announce 2017 Examination and Regulatory Priorities

On January 4 and January 12, 2017, respectively, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) and the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (“SEC”) Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (“OCIE”) each...more

SEC and FINRA Regulatory Priorities: Common Goals for 2017

Each year, both the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issue guidance concerning their regulatory priorities for the coming year. This year, FINRA...more

"Change in Administration Presents Opportunity to Revisit DOL Fiduciary Rule"

In 2016, regulatory developments introduced fundamental changes in the legal standards that govern the relationship of broker-dealers with their customers. Although the changes are not applicable until April 10, 2017, most in...more

FINRA to Require Web-Based Arbitration Filings

Effective April 3, 2017, all FINRA arbitration participants (except pro se parties) must use FINRA’s web-based DR-Portal to file and serve documents in both customer and industry arbitrations. ...more

Ninth Circuit Accords Chevron Deference To The SEC, What Would Judge Gorsuch Say?

Last week, I noted that Judge Gorsuch has expressed a certain skepticism of Chevron deference. The next day, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that the Securities and Exchange Commission’s interpretation of Section...more

Funds Talk: February 2017

Private Fund Advisers, Robo-Advisers, ETFs Among SEC, FINRA Exam Priorities for 2017 - As the new year begins, U.S. regulators highlighted the areas – some new and some familiar – which will be the focus of their...more

SEC Staff Clarifies Application of 1940 Act Section 22(d) to Brokers Selling Clean Shares of Mutual Funds

In response to a request for interpretative guidance, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission staff (staff) advised on January 11, 2017 that Section 22(d) of the Investment Company Act of 1940 does not prevent a broker...more

Investment Management Legal + Regulatory Update – February 2017

REGULATION - DOL Issues Additional Guidance on Fiduciary Rule - On January 13, 2017, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued a second set of guidance on its new fiduciary rules, which are scheduled to become...more

FINRA Issues Report on Distributed Ledger Technology

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) published a report on January 18, 2017, regarding Distributed Ledger Technology (“DLT”) (also known as blockchain technology) that provides an overview of different DLT...more

2016 Year-End Securities Litigation and Enforcement Highlights

Welcome to the 2016 Year-End Report from the BakerHostetler Securities Litigation and Regulatory Enforcement Practice Team. The purpose of this Report is to provide a periodic survey, apart from our team Executive...more

SEC Simplifies Filing of Broker-Dealer Annual Reports on EDGAR

The SEC has previously provided guidance on the filing of annual and supplemental reports required under Rule 17a-5 or Rule 17a-12 by broker-dealers or over-the-counter derivatives dealers on the SEC EDGAR system. However,...more

Anti-Money Laundering and Cybersecurity Among the 2017 SEC Examination Priorities

Earlier this month, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced its Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations’ (OCIE) 2017 Examination Priorities regarding certain practices, products, and services that...more

FINRA Is Ready to Lace-up and Focus on “Blocking and Tackling”: FINRA’s 2017 Priorities and Related Enforcement Actions

As the football season was winding down, on January 4, 2017, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) published its 2017 Annual Regulatory and Examination Priorities Letter. According to FINRA President and CEO,...more

One Man’s Rogue Broker Is Another Man’s Treasure

Like it has in the past, FINRA is sharply focused on examining brokers with a disciplinary past, including the indentification and examination of such brokers being placed at the top of its 2017 exam priorities. Does this...more

SEC's New Rule Requires Additional Disclosures on Form ADV

On January 12, 2017, the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (“OCIE”) published its 2017 examination priorities.1 OCIE’s 2017 priorities, which largely mirror its 2016 priorities, cover three areas: (1)...more

Alert: Upcoming Regulatory Deadlines and Compliance Checklist for VC and PE Firms

This alert highlights near-term regulatory deadlines that commonly apply to venture capital and private equity firms. For a more detailed description of regulatory and contractual requirements that commonly apply to venture...more

SEC Annual Exam Guidance: Cybersecurity, Robo-Advising, and Retirement

The SEC recently announced its Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations’ (OCIE) 2017 priorities. Though these listed priorities are not exhaustive and remain flexible in light of market conditions, industry...more

Blockchain: Things to Consider Before the Securities Industry Leaves the Sandbox

There have been many articles, papers, books, seminars, roundtables and conferences around the potential for blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT), and announcing trials or tests of new applications for...more

FINRA Seeks Comment on Blockchain

On Jan. 18, 2017, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) became the latest organization to weigh in on distributed ledger technology (DLT), also known as blockchain. Recognizing the growing interest and potential...more

SEC Charges BD, COO With Failing to File SARs

The Commission has long focused on microcap fraud by, among other things, bringing manipulation actions centered on penny stocks. OCIE and FINRA have also issued guidance for compliance departments on red flags to watch for...more

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