FINRA Regulatory Notice 22-11 FINRA Reminds Firms of Their Sales Practice Obligations for Alternative Mutual Funds
Recently, FINRA took enforcement action against several firms for failing to establish or maintain a reasonably designed supervisory system for recommendations of alternative mutual funds, also sometimes referred to as “alt funds” or “liquid alts” (“Alt Funds”). FINRA is continuing to note such deficiencies in its examinations and communications reviews of such products.
MSRB Regulatory Notice 2021-06 Request for Comment on Application of Regulation Best Interest to Bank-Dealers
The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (“MSRB” or “Board”) seeks comment on a draft amendment to MSRB Rule G-19, on suitability of recommendations and transactions, that would require bank dealers1 to comply with Rule 15l-1 (“Regulation Best Interest”) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act” or the “Act”) when making recommendations of securities transactions or investment strategies involving municipal securities to retail customers (the “request for comment”). In response to the recent adoption of Regulation Best Interest by the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC” or the “Commission”), the draft amendment is intended to promote regulatory parity in the municipal market by extending the investor protections afforded by Regulation Best Interest to retail customers that receive a recommendation from a bank dealer regarding a municipal security.
SR-NYSE-2020-83 Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change to Extend the Current Pilot Program Related to Rule 7
The purpose of the proposed rule change is to extend the current pilot program related to Rule 7.10 (Clearly Erroneous Executions) to the close of business on April 20, 2021. The pilot program is currently due to expire on October 20, 2020.
MSRB Regulatory Notice 2020-07 MSRB Reminds Regulated Entities of Application of Supervisory Requirements in Light of Coronavirus
The MSRB is closely monitoring the impact of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on municipal market participants, including municipal securities dealers, municipal advisors, issuers and investors. In light of the recent public health concerns due to the outbreak, the MSRB recognizes that the coronavirus may present operational challenges and business disruption for regulated entities. To address concerns regarding potential business and operational challenges, the MSRB is issuing this reminder to regulated entities regarding the supervision of municipal securities and municipal advisory activities and that of their associated persons.
FINRA Regulatory Notice 20-08 Pandemic-Related Business Continuity Planning, Guidance and Regulatory Relief
Due to the recent outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), FINRA reminds member firms to consider pandemic-related business continuity planning, including whether their business continuity plans (BCPs) are sufficiently flexible to address a wide range of possible effects in the event of a pandemic in the United States. Each member firm is also encouraged to review its BCP to consider pandemic preparedness and to review its emergency contacts to ensure that FINRA has a reliable means of contacting the firm. This Notice also provides pandemic-related guidance and regulatory relief to member firms from some requirements. As coronavirus-related risks decrease, member firms should expect to return to meeting any regulatory obligations for which relief has been provided.
FINRA Regulatory Notice 19-34 Annual Compliance Meetings Retrospective Rule Review Report and Guidance
In April 2018, FINRA launched a retrospective review of the annual compliance meeting (ACM) requirement in Rule 3110(a)(7) and corresponding Supplementary Material .04 (SM .04), to assess its effectiveness and efficiency. The review is part of an ongoing initiative to periodically look back at a rule or set of rules to ensure they remain relevant and appropriately designed to achieve their regulatory objectives, particularly in light of industry, market and technology changes. Based on the assessment, which involved feedback from both internal stakeholders and a wide range of external stakeholders, FINRA has determined to maintain the requirement without change. This Notice summarizes the review process, the predominant themes that emerged from stakeholder feedback and the basis for the determination. While the review confirmed the continuing importance of Rule 3110(a)(7), some stakeholders asked for some clarifying guidance concerning the various ways in which annual compliance meetings may be conducted. That guidance is also set forth in this Notice
FINRA Regulatory Notice 19-28 Guidance Regarding Member Firms’ Supervisory Obligations when Participating in Investment-Related Activities with Municipal Clients
FINRA is issuing this Notice to remind member firms of their supervisory obligations under FINRA Rules 3110 (Supervision) and 3120 (Supervisory Control System) if they hold or transact in customer accounts owned by municipal entities or obligated persons (municipal clients), as defined in Section 15B of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (Exchange Act), and participate in investment-related activities with municipal clients, such as recommending or selling non-municipal securities products to such municipal clients. Under these circumstances, member firms are obligatedto determine if such activities require registration as a municipal advisor.
Cboe RG19-022 Regulatory Division Contacts for Market Maker Quoting Issues and Late Withdrawals/Terminations
This circular was issued to inform Trading Permit Holders (“TPHs”) and Members registered as Market Makers of contact information for notifying the Regulatory Division when a Market Maker experiences quoting issues and when a Market Maker changes its appointment selections or withdraws or terminates its appointment or registration in a given security after the applicable cutoff time.
Cboe Exchange, Inc. is issuing this Regulatory Circular to inform Trading Permit Holders that the Exchanges will be discontinuing access to Market Replay as outlined in further in the Regulatory Circular.
MSRB Regulatory notice 2019-13 Request for Comment on MSRB Rule G-23 on Activities of Dealers Acting as Financial Advisors
The MSRB is seeking comment on MSRB Rule G-23, on activities of financial advisors, in connection with its ongoing retrospective review of MSRB rules and guidance. This request for comment is intended to elicit input on whether Rule G-23’s requirements on brokers, dealers and municipal securities dealers (together, “dealers”) acting in a financial advisor capacity to issuers with respect to the issuance of municipal securities, and related MSRB interpretive guidance, continue to achieve the rule’s intended purpose and reflect current practices in the municipal securities market. The MSRB invites all interested parties to submit comments in response to this request, along with any other information they believe would be useful. Comments should be submitted no later than August 19, 2019 and may be submitted in electronic or paper form.
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