Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Preparing for the Consolidated Audit Trail Program

FINRA Reminds Firms to Register for CAT Reporting by June 27, 2019

On May 21, 2019, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (“FINRA”) issued Regulatory Notice 19-19 to remind all "Industry Members," regardless of size, that receive or originate orders in NMS stocks, OTC equity securities or listed options that they will be required to report to CAT.  Industry Members that must register for the CAT include any: (i) member of FINRA or a national securities exchange that handles orders or quotes in NMS stocks, OTC equity securities or exchange listed options; and (ii) third-party CAT reporting agent that is or will be authorized to submit data to the CAT on behalf of an Industry Member

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Thursday, October 5, 2017

New York City Limits Salary History Inquiries

Can a NYC employer ask about  salary history during the hiring process?

When it comes to hiring, one of the biggest challenges for many employers is negotiating a salary. In this regard, it is customary for employers, employment agencies and agents to inquire about a job applicant’s salary history. However, many advocates of pay equality believe this practice puts women and people of color at a disadvantage and automatically steers them into lower salary levels.  To address this, New York City enacted legislation, which becomes effective on October 31, 2017, prohibiting NYC employers and others from inquiring about a job candidate’s salary history.
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Friday, June 30, 2017

Supreme Court Limits SEC's Disgorgement Powers

In a highly anticipated ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court limited the power of the Securities and Exchange  Commission (SEC) to recover profits garnered from illegal conduct. The SEC has long relied on disgorgement in cases involving broker misconduct.

In a unanimous decision, the high court ruled that the SEC must abide by a five-year statute of limitations in seeking disgorgement in securities fraud cases.
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Wednesday, December 14, 2016

RIAs have been slow to prepare for the DOL fiduciary rule

What must investment advisors watch out for in preparation for the implementation of the DOL fiduciary rule?

Retirement savings laws have been in effect and largely unchanged for about four decades, despite significant shifts in how our society manages its’ retirement investments. During that time, far too many Americans have been harmed by unscrupulous investment advisors putting their bottom line before the best interests of the investor.  

In response to the changing retirement landscape, the Department of Labor has enacted a new rule expanding the definition of investment advice and the fiduciary standard that will go into effect on April 10, 2017. Investment News reports that registered investment advisors (RIA’s) have been slow to prepare for the rule either because they believe the rule does not apply to them, or perhaps they hope that president-elect Trump will make good on his promise to repeal the rule.

A thorough reading of the rule reveals that it is applicable to anyone who:

  • provides “investment advice” for a fee or other compensation pursuant to a written or verbal agreement, or a general understanding that the advice is based on the particular investment needs of the individual, and
  • represents that they are acting as a fiduciary within the meaning of ERISA or the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or
  • provides recommendations directed to a particular person or set of people regarding the advisability of a specific investment or management decision

The rule is, without a doubt, applicable to RIA’s and

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Monday, November 28, 2016

Supreme Court Weighs False Claim Act Seal Provisions

What are the seal provisions in a qui tam complaint?

The U.S. Supreme Court is weighing the conditions under which a federal court should dismiss lawsuits brought by whistleblowers who violate the law's non-disclosure requirements. In short, a qui tam complaint must be filed and remain under seal for sixty days. During this period, the government investigates the allegations and decides whether to intervene while the plaintiff is barred from publicly disclosing the suit.

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Monday, November 28, 2016

FINRA Fines Oppenheimer $3.4 Million

What violations did investment bank Oppenheimer commit?

Recently, investment bank Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. agreed to pay $3.4 million in penalties imposed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for several reporting violations.  FINRA fined the massive corporation $1.
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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Tripwire Study: Retailers Overconfident in Endpoint Cyber Security Despite Point-of-Sale Threats

Are your IT professionals overconfident about your company’s cybersecurity?

We’ve all heard the phrase “you don’t know what you don’t know” used either as a cautionary tale or in a “let the chips fall where they may” sigh of resignation. While this type of thinking may encourage your team to dig in and actually seek out what they don’t know, it is far too often the hallmark of a team resigned to the status quo. This type of thinking form your IT department can be deadly to your company.

On the other hand, overconfidence on the part of your IT department, while perhaps soothing in a boardroom, can also sound the death knoll for your company.  When you query your IT department on potential threats and planned mitigation, how do you know that you are getting realistic data, as opposed to overly optimistic bravado? How much will it cost your company if they are wrong?

Overconfident IT Professionals

Acutely aware of this issue, Dimensional Research recently undertook a

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Monday, November 14, 2016

AT&T Strikes Huge Deal to Acquire Time Warner Might Be Subject to Intense Regulatory Scrutiny

Let’s face it people- we cannot live without our content and the technology that brings it to us all day every day. So, you might be happy to learn that there are big changes taking place in the entertainment industry. The latest in a string of big deals is one where

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Re-Evaluating Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act

Has Dodd-Frank Accomplished What It Was Supposed To?

The Dodd-Frank Act, passed in response to the 2008 financial crisis, is a federal law that places regulation of the financial industry under government control. Now, however, 6 years after its passage, many questions remain concerning whether the Dodd-Frank Act made the country's economy stronger and more protected.

As federal and state regulations are evaluated and altered, managing securities, commodities and other financial services becomes more complex. This is where it is crucial to have the services of an

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Elliott Management Corp. Pressuring Samsung Electronics to Simplify Its Structure

Why is Samsung Electronics Co. being pushed to restructure?

Samsung Electronics Co. is being pushed by Elliott Management Corp. to restructure and simplify its complicated ownership structure. The management company puts forth the argument that streamlining Samsung's structure would level the playing field with its international electronics rivals.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

S.E.C. Issues $53 Million Fine Against Apollo Global Management

Why was Apollo Global charged with securities law violations?

The Securities and Exchange Commission (S.E.C.) recently lobbed a roughly $53 million fine against private equity firm Apollo Global Management for several securities law violations.  Apollo has agreed to settle the case, resolving accusations that the firm misled investors.

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