News - Bates Research

New CFTC Commissioner Proposes “21st Century” Approach

Bates News, Bates Research  |  10-18-17

New CFTC Commissioner Proposes “21st Century” Approach

At the CFTC a line has been drawn: the regulator will shift away from focusing on “regulating the last crisis” to ensure that they remain relevant in modern markets. Rather than reacting to market innovation, the CFTC sees a role for itself in advancing and promoting innovation. This new viewpoint was prominently discussed in the first public address of Brian Quintenz, newly sworn in as Commissioner of the CFTC. Mr. Quintenz challenged the entire approach undertaken by his predecessors toward regulating the activity of the sector.

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NASAA Issues Annual Securities Enforcement Report and Expands Resources for IAs and BDs

Bates News, Bates Research  |  10-12-17

NASAA Issues Annual Securities Enforcement Report and Expands Resources for IAs and BDs

In his first address to the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), newly-elected and third-time President Joseph Borg identified key priorities for his upcoming term. He emphasized cooperation between state and federal regulators and highlighted NASAA’s commitment to strengthened enforcement, technology advancement and cybersecurity. 

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New SEC, State Regulator Initiatives and Filings Amid Cyber Breaches

Bates News, Bates Research  |  10-04-17

New SEC, State Regulator Initiatives and Filings Amid Cyber Breaches

Testifying at an oversight hearing before the Senate Banking Committee on September 26, 2017, SEC Chairman Jay Clayton addressed concerns over the SEC’s disclosure of a 2016 cyber-security breach involving its own EDGAR system for corporate filings, as well as the massive breach of the Equifax credit reporting agency database that put in jeopardy the personal information of over 140 million Americans. In response to these cyber incidents, the SEC is planning to utilize its new Cyber Unit, and New York State has propsed regulations that would give its Department of Financial Services the power to oversee credit reporting agencies.

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A Conversation on Big Data in Enforcement: How Firms and Compliance Officers Should Prepare

Bates News, Bates Research  |  09-21-17

A Conversation on Big Data in Enforcement: How Firms and Compliance Officers Should Prepare

This week, Bates Research sits down with experts Alex Russell and Shane Shook to talk about data analytics and regulatory enforcement, the increasingly complex responsibilities of compliance officers, and what firms should be doing to prepare in this changing technological landscape.

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Senior Investors Update: New Developments Signal Tough Line on Elder Financial Abuse

Bates News, Bates Research  |  09-06-17

Senior Investors Update: New Developments Signal Tough Line on Elder Financial Abuse

A FINRA arbitration panel recently assessed over $1.5 million in costs, disgorgement and punitive damages against a privately held financial services and investment firm in relation to allegations of senior financial abuse and violations of state and federal securities laws (among other claims). The outcome of this case, together with a new North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) "Pulse Survey" of state securities regulators on the topic of senior financial fraud, and a newly announced National Association of Attorneys General senior financial fraud initiative are the latest chapters in the story of an industry working to address elder and vulnerable clients. Bates Group has been following both the federal and state efforts to help seniors and other vulnerable investors.

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SEC Data Analytics Team Strikes Again

Bates News, Bates Research  |  08-24-17

SEC Data Analytics Team Strikes Again

The SEC is not slowing down in its extensive use of sophisticated data analytics to drive enforcement efforts. Last week, the agency brought charges against seven individuals who participated in complex insider trading schemes that netted millions of dollars in illegal profits. The case has garnered significant attention because the defendants were caught by the SEC using data analytics despite the defendants’ use of sophisticated methods and new communications technologies to evade detection. Bates has played a leadership role in the public discussion of the enforcement implications and use of big data analysis by the regulatory agencies. In this post we review some recent enforcement developments and the increasing role of the SEC’s Market Abuse Unit (MAU)’s Analysis and Detection Center (ADC).

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DOL Fiduciary Duty Rule: What Your Firm Should Do Now

Bates Research  |  08-17-17

DOL Fiduciary Duty Rule: What Your Firm Should Do Now

The road to implementation of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary duty rule continues to be bumpy. The latest turn may mark yet another delay of the Rule. Specifically, the requirements of the Rule that took effect on June 9, 2017 may be extended from its original, full compliance date of January 1, 2018 to July 1, 2019. Today we report on the DOL’s recent moves and offer recommendations for financial services firms to consider as they navigate the ongoing regulatory and compliance uncertainty. 

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Financial Regulatory Roundup: New Players Set to Advance New Agenda

Bates Research  |  08-10-17

Financial Regulatory Roundup: New Players Set to Advance New Agenda

At the SEC, CFTC and FINRA, key personnel changes are finally taking place, and with them some repositioning around new agendas. Today we bring you an update on recent developments and appointments to watch.

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FINRA President and CEO Sets Forth Comprehensive Bad Actor Initiative

Bates Research  |  07-27-17

FINRA President and CEO Sets Forth Comprehensive Bad Actor Initiative

This is the second installment in our ongoing look at FINRA’s efforts to address high risk brokers, also referred to by FINRA as “bad actors.”  Our first installment discussed  the set of proposals recently approved by FINRA’s Board of Governors to identify high risk brokers and enhance tools for disciplinary actions, examinations and ongoing surveillance. In a speech before the Georgetown Center for Financial Markets and Policy, Robert Cook, President and CEO of FINRA, set forth FINRA’s comprehensive approach to the self-regulatory agency’s existing and developing programs and practices to protect investors and markets from bad actors.

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Is the End Near For Mandatory Arbitration Clauses in Consumer Financial Contracts?

Bates Research  |  07-19-17

Is the End Near For Mandatory Arbitration Clauses in Consumer Financial Contracts?

Reactions to the issuance of a final rule by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) prohibiting the use of mandatory arbitration clauses to block consumers of certain financial products and services from filing class action lawsuits have been swift and partisan.

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