1. FINRA Information Notice 12-14-15

    FINRA reminds firms of their Annual Audit, Financial and Operational Combined Uniform Single (FOCUS), Form Custody, and supplemental FOCUS Report filing obligations. All such filings must be received by FINRA by their required due dates to avoid specified fees as set forth in Schedule A to FINRA’s By-Laws and to avoid suspension of FINRA membership. This Notice provides the due dates for filings that are due in 2016 or in the first quarter of 2017. All filings submitted to FINRA must be made electronically through FINRA’s Firm Gateway.


  2. CBOE Regulatory Circular RG15-180 Qualification, Registration, and Continuing Education Requirements for Registered Persons

    The Chicago Board Options Exchange, Incorporated (CBOE) and C2 Options Exchange, Incorporated (C2) (the Exchanges) recently filed rule changes with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or Commission) to establish a new registration category and qualification examination requirement for Securities Traders and Securities Trader Principals.


  3. SIFMA Submits Comments to FINRA and MSRB on FINRA Regulatory Notice 15-36 and MSRB Regulatory Notice 2015-16

    SIFMA provided comments to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA’s) Regulatory Notice 15-36 and the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board’s (MSRB’s) Regulatory Notice 2015-16. SIFMA strongly supports efforts to enhance bond market price transparency in a way that provides retail investors with useful, clear, and consistent insight into their transactions, and appreciates the deep engagement with our members by both FINRA and the MSRB over the past several months concerning this issue.


  4. SIFMA Submits Comments to the MSRB on Notice 2015-22

    SIFMA provides comments to the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) on changes to MSRB rules to facilitate shortening the securities settlement cycle. The draft amendments are in response to a financial services industry-led initiative to shorten the regular way settlement for equities, corporate bonds, municipal bonds, and unit investment trusts from T+3 to T+2.


  5. FINRA Regulatory Notice 15-52 SEC Staff Provides Insight Into Firms’ Obligations When Providing Stock Quote Information to Customers

    FINRA reminds firms and registered representatives of their obligations under Rule 603(c) of Regulation NMS (Vendor Display Rule) when providing quotation information to customers. The SEC staff recently made clear its view that if a registered representative provides a quotation to a customer that can be used to assess the current market or the quality of trade execution, reliance on non-consolidated market information as the source of that quotation would not be consistent with the Vendor Display Rule. In light of the SEC staff’s statements, firms should review whether they are in compliance with the requirement in the Vendor Display Rule that broker-dealers provide a consolidated display of market data when they are providing quotation information to customers.


  6. FINRA Regulatory Notice 15-51 Equity Trade Reporting

    Pursuant to rule amendments that will be effective February 1, 2016, FINRA is introducing a new category of trade submissions—clearing-only, non-regulatory reports—that firms can use to submit to clearing those OTC transactions in equity securities that have been previously reported through a FINRA facility. Clearing-only, non-regulatory reports cannot be used for regulatory reporting purposes. As such, firms can only use these reports where their regulatory reporting obligations to FINRA have been satisfied through other submissions (tape reports, i.e., submitted for public dissemination purposes, or non-tape reports).


  7. NASDAQ OMX PHLX SR-Phlx-2015-94

    Self-Regulatory Organizations; NASDAQ OMX PHLX LLC; Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change to Make Permanent the Pilot Program Eliminating Minimum Value Sizes For Opening Transactions in New Series of FLEX Options.


  8. SR-NYSEMKT-2015-99 Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of Proposed Rule Change Amending Exchange Rules to Prescribe the Securities Traders Examination

    NYSE MKT notice of filing and immediate effectiveness of proposed rule change amending exchange rules to prescribe the Securities Traders Examination as the qualifying examination for persons associated with a member organization engaged solely in Proprietary Trading, and amend Continuing Education requirement applicable to such members.


  9. FINRA Regulatory Notice 15-50 SEC Approves Rule Requiring Members’ Websites to Include a Readily Apparent Reference and Hyperlink to BrokerCheck

    The SEC approved amendments to FINRA Rule 2210 (Communications with the Public) to require each of a member firm’s websites to include a readily apparent reference and hyperlink to BrokerCheck on (1) the initial Web page that the firm intends to be viewed by retail investors, and (2) any other Web page that includes a professional profile of one or more registered persons who conduct business with retail investors. The rule amendments become effective June 6, 2016.


  10. SIFMA Submits Comments to Congress on CRT

    SIFMA provides comments to congress in strengthening the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) efforts to implement private-sector credit risk transfer transactions (CRT) involving Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. SIFMA and its member firms strongly support Congress in their effort to restore significant levels of private capital participation in the extension of mortgage credit. Like many stakeholders, our industry seeks a mortgage market that balances access to credit with systemic stability and prudent underwriting.


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