News & Analysis as of

2016 Year In Review: Securities Litigation And Regulation

2016 was an active year in securities litigation. In the first half of 2016 alone, plaintiffs filed 119 new federal class action securities cases. It was also a busy year for SEC enforcement proceedings, with a record 868...more

The Year In Review: SEC Enforcement Actions Against Investment Advisers

The Securities and Exchange Commission’s enforcement program is highly focused on investment advisers for an obvious reason: they manage more than $67 trillion in assets for approximately 30 million clients. In addition,...more

Big Regulatory Changes in Store for Funds and Advisers? No One Knows for Certain, but Here’s Our Best Guess

While no one knows for sure what the future holds for investment management regulation, the tea leaves indicate that we may expect a slowdown on new regulations, some pullback on parts of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and...more

SEC Takes Issue with Employee Confidentiality Obligations and Waivers of Monetary Awards

The Securities and Exchange Commission's (the "SEC" or "Commission") Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations ("OCIE") issued a risk alert on October 24, 2016, announcing that it will be reviewing registrants'...more

Election 2016: President Trump’s Potential Impact on Business

Now that U.S. President-Elect Donald J. Trump has secured victory and Republicans retained control of Congress, it’s time to take a serious look at the Republican Party platform and its potential impact on business....more

Orrick's Financial Industry Week In Review

Financial Industry Developments - SEC Adopts Final Rules to Facilitate Intrastate and Regional Securities Offerings - On October 26, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission adopted rules designed to modernize...more

SEC Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations Issues Risk Alert on Whistleblower Rule Compliance

On October 24, Staff in the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (the “Staff”) issued a National Exam Program Risk Alert announcing that it is examining registered investment advisers and registered...more

OCIE Publishes Risk Alert on Examinations of Compliance with SEC Whistleblower Rule by Investment Advisers and Broker-Dealers

The Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a National Exam Program Risk Alert on October 24, 2016 (Risk Alert) regarding examinations of...more

CFPB Grabs for SEC/CFTC Turf

In May, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) proposed a ban on “mandatory arbitration” contract clauses that make financial products consumers waive their right to join class actions. Broker-dealers,...more

SEC Exams Looking for Whistleblower Violations

SEC staff in the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations are examining compliance with key whistleblower provisions arising out of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The staff is...more

SEC's Focus on Private Equity Firms Continues with Recent Action

A settled enforcement action, announced by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on September 14, 2016, continues the trend of increased SEC scrutiny of private equity advisers concerning the allocation and...more

SEC Amends Form ADV and Investment Adviser Recordkeeping Rules

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently adopted amendments to Form ADV and to Rule 204-2 (Recordkeeping Rule), as well as technical amendments to other rules under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940...more

Financial Services Weekly News - September 2016

Editor's Note - The OCC Takes Another Step Toward a Limited Purpose FinTech Charter. On September 13, in a speech at the Marketplace Lending Policy Summit 2016, Comptroller of the Currency Thomas J. Curry discussed the...more

Common Deficiencies Noted in Exams of Minnesota Registered Investment Advisers

The Minnesota Department of Commerce recently conducted a series of routine exams of investment adviser firms registered in Minnesota to analyze their compliance with certain regulations applicable to investment advisers. ...more

SEC Approves FINRA & MSRB (Almost) Pay-to-Play Rules

The SEC announced August 25 that it approved FINRA’s pay-to-play rules governing placement-agent or solicitor broker-dealers and was “prepared” to approve the extension of MSRB Rule G-37 to municipal advisors as well....more

SEC Committee Recommends Investor-Specific Mutual Fund Cost Disclosures

In mid-April, the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee (IAC) issued a recommendation that the SEC "explore ways to improve mutual fund cost disclosures." As a first step, the IAC urges the SEC to require that periodic...more

Orrick's Financial Industry Week in Review

Federal Reserve Announces Extension of Conformance Period under Section 13 of the Bank Holding Company Act - On July 7, 2016, the Federal Reserve announced that it will extend until July 21, 2017 the conformance period...more

2016/07/12 SEC Adopts Inflation-Based Adjustment to “Qualified Client” Thresholds

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission issued a final order (Order) on June 14, 2016, to adjust for inflation the “qualified client” thresholds applicable when a registered investment adviser charges a performance fee in...more

Whistleblower Concerns for Private Fund Advisers – Seven Mistakes To Avoid

As we have previously observed, private fund advisers face a difficult challenge when SEC guidance (in the form of a speech or a public enforcement order) indicates that certain long-standing practices may be contrary to the...more

Can There Be Too Much Disclosure?

In an effort to provide transparency, the Dodd-Frank Act has previously formed an Investor Advisory Committee to assist the SEC on various issues including regulatory priorities, the regulation of securities products, trading...more

Financial Services Weekly News - June 2016 #4

Regulatory Developments - SEC Issues Order Approving Inflation Adjustments to “Qualified Client” Dollar Thresholds for Investment Adviser Performance Fee Rule - On June 14, the SEC issued an order approving...more

SEC Issues Order Increasing the Net Worth Test Under Rule 205-3 Under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 to $2.1 Million

Section 205(a)(1) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 (the “Advisers Act”) generally prohibits an investment adviser from entering into, extending, renewing, or performing any investment advisory contract that provides for...more

The SEC Proposes Rules to Address Investment Advisor and Broker-Dealer Incentive Based Compensation

The SEC recently released a proposed rule pursuant to Section 956 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (“Dodd-Frank”) with respect to the implementation of incentive-based compensation arrangements...more

The Financial Report - Volume 5, No. 11 • June 2016 (Global)

Discussion and Analysis - A few years ago, David Blass, then Chief Counsel of the SEC’s Division of Trading and Markets, created a stir when he said in a speech that private fund advisers should be concerned about some...more

Application of the Joint Proposed Incentive Compensation Rule to Investment Advisers

On May 16, 2016, six federal agencies issued a joint release inviting public comment on a proposed rule to prohibit or condition certain incentive-based compensation arrangements. This proposed rule was mandated by section...more

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