News

SEC Office of the Investor Advocate Releases New Report on Efforts to Protect Seniors

Bates News, Bates Research  |  05-23-19

SEC Office of the Investor Advocate Releases New Report on Efforts to Protect Seniors

The SEC Office of Investor Advocate (OIA) has prepared a valuable overview report on the SEC’s efforts to protect seniors from financial exploitation. The 25-page paper highlights the agency’s examination, enforcement and regulatory policy, in addition to its education and outreach activities. Bates follows regulatory and enforcement developments on senior financial exploitation issues closely. In this article, we review key observations from this latest OIA report which hones in, specifically, on the SEC’s approach to combating senior financial fraud.

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FINRA on AML, Departing Registered Representatives, New Proposed Rules for Firm Misconduct

Bates News, Bates Research  |  05-16-19

FINRA on AML, Departing Registered Representatives, New Proposed Rules for Firm Misconduct

Over the last month, FINRA issued guidance on anti-money laundering compliance and customer communications concerning departing registered representatives. FINRA also proposed a rule adding obligations to firms with a significant history of misconduct. In this article we take a closer look at these moves and the stepped-up expectations that flow from them.

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FINRA Issues Guidance on Anti-Money Laundering Compliance Obligations

Bates News, Compliance and Regulatory Alerts  |  05-13-19

FINRA Issues Guidance on Anti-Money Laundering Compliance Obligations

In a new Regulatory Notice, FINRA provided guidance on reporting and monitoring suspicious activities under a member firm’s anti-money laundering (“AML”) compliance program.

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Safeguarding Client Information: OCIE Wants Firms to Increase Efforts

Bates News  |  05-09-19

Safeguarding Client Information: OCIE Wants Firms to Increase Efforts

Continuing in its efforts to prioritize the protection of retail investors, the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examination (OCIE) has issued a new Risk Alert highlighting privacy and information security issues raised during examinations of registered investment advisers and broker-dealers. In this article, Bates Research takes a closer look at the new Alert and the OCIE’s emphasis on improving firms' compliance in safeguarding their clients' personal information.

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SEC Enforcement Investigating Firms That Did Not Self-Report

Bates News, Compliance and Regulatory Alerts  |  05-02-19

SEC Enforcement Investigating Firms That Did Not Self-Report

The SEC's Enforcement Division has now initiated investigations against firms that did not self-report by the deadline of the SEC’s Share Class Selection Disclosure Initiative. Whether you are facing an enforcement or remediation effort, Bates can help.

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New Jersey Makes Its Move, Proposes Financial Services Fiduciary Standard

Bates News, Bates Research  |  05-02-19

New Jersey Makes Its Move, Proposes Financial Services Fiduciary Standard

On April 15th, the New Jersey State Bureau of Securities proposed applying uniform fiduciary standards to broker-dealers and investment advisers. Promoted by Governor Phil Murphy (pictured), the proposed rule would deem any breach of fiduciary duty owed to a customer under the proposed regulation a “dishonest and unethical practice.” In this article, Bates describes the state's proposal and considers some of the implications and reaction to New Jersey's move.

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Federal Legislators Target Mandatory Arbitration

Bates News, Bates Research  |  04-25-19

Federal Legislators Target Mandatory Arbitration

Longstanding opposition to mandatory arbitration is finding renewed momentum as federal legislators introduce bills to limit or even eliminate the binding provisions in consumer, employment and financial contracts. In this article, Bates Research looks at the new legislation targeting mandatory arbitration agreements, some reactions by industry groups and recent developments on the broader subject, including yesterday’s U.S. Supreme Court arbitration decision and continued pressure on FINRA.

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Bates Welcomes Our Newest Experts and Consultants

Bates News, Industry News  |  04-17-19

Bates Welcomes Our Newest Experts and Consultants

Bates is proud to introduce four new experts and consultants: Jennifer Bergenfeld, Pamela O’Neill, Matthew Sekerke and Phil Swatzell.

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Bates Group President Ben Pappas Honored as a 2019 “Forty Under 40”  by Portland Business Journal

Bates News  |  04-17-19

Bates Group President Ben Pappas Honored as a 2019 “Forty Under 40”  by Portland Business Journal

Bates Group congratulates President Benjamin Pappas on his recognition as a 2019 "Forty Under 40" business leader by the Portland Business Journal.

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FINRA Is Scrutinizing UTMA/UGMA Accounts

Bates News, Compliance and Regulatory Alerts, Industry News  |  04-11-19

FINRA Is Scrutinizing UTMA/UGMA Accounts

In June 2018, Bates Group published an article reporting on deficiencies identified by FINRA in its exam findings which may trigger further scrutiny. In that article we noted FINRA’s focus on the Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA), among other exam topics. That scrutiny has now arrived in the form of FINRA inquiries/investigations into how accounts for UTMA and Uniform Gifts to Minors Act (UGMA) accounts are handled at financial services firms.

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