January 21, 2021

Blog | MasterCompliance

  • Merrill Mutual Fund Enforcement Lessons Learned
    FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) announced on June 2, 2022 that it ordered Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc., to pay 15.2 million in restitution and interest to thousands of customers who purchased Class C mutual fund shares when Class A shares were available at a substantially lower cost. FINRA news releases are useful tools to look for trends in violations and other sanctions. These trends can assist you in identifying weak areas in your Firm’s compliance programs or surveillance. Below is a summary of the Merrill order, as well as key takeaways. Click here for the corresponding news Read More....
  • ESG Investing
    ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) products and financial services have become a popular word in the world of regulation. With the SEC’s Risk Alert on The Division of Examinations’ Review of ESG Investing and the most recent 2022 SEC Examination Priorities Report, understanding key compliance considerations to protect your Firm is vital. If your Firm provides these products and financial services, we have provided some key tips and compliance considerations. What is ESG Investing: ESG investing is a term that has many different meanings and may go by different names such as sustainable investing, socially responsible investing, and impact investing. Read More....
  • Customer Complaint Report
    The Customer Complaint Report is a quarterly report that displays trends in complaints reported to FINRA’s Rule 4530 Application each quarter, pursuant to FINRA Rule 4530. When a customer complaint is submitted to FINRA, the submitter must identify the product and problem classification detailed in the complaint. The report allows a firm to see their complaints in two views, by problem identified in the complaint and by product for which the complaint was submitted. Navigating the Customer Complaint Report The complaints by problem view is displayed by default. To see complaints submitted by product, choose Product from the Views drop-down Read More....
  • Crowdfunding Enforcement Lessons Learned
    FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) announced on May 4, 2022, that it fined two FINRA registered funding portals, a combined $1.75 million for failing to comply with securities laws and rules designed to protect investors in the crowdfunding space. These news releases are useful tools to look for trends in enforcement, violations, and other sanctions. These trends can assist you in identifying weak areas in your Firm’s compliance programs or surveillance. Below is a summary of the Wefunder and StartEngine matters, as well as key takeaways. Click here for the corresponding news release. Summary of Findings from Wefunder Enforcement: From Read More....
  • Customer Account Transfer
    From time to time, customers may look to move their account to a new brokerage firm for a wide variety of reasons, such as better or wider variety of services or lower costs. It may also be that the customer has learned the broker is under investigation by regulators or has apparently committed rule violations in connection with the account. Whatever the reason, your firm must respect customer account transfer instructions. Automated Customer Account Transfer Service (ACATS) This can be accomplished by using the Automated Customer Account Transfer Service or ACATS for short. The receiving member firm will initiate the Read More....
  • Customer Complaints (FINRA Rule 4513)
    FINRA Rule 4513 defines a “customer complaint” as any grievance by a customer or any person authorized to act on behalf of the customer involving the activities of the member or a person associated with the member in connection with the solicitation or execution of any transaction or the disposition of securities or funds of that customer. Customer complaints that are made in person or over the phone are not within the scope of this rule, however, it is still prudent for members to address these complaints so that they do not escalate further. If a complaint is resolved to Read More....