Finra has announced a series of fee hikes.
As expected, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. this week detailed rate increases for advertising reviews, corporate-financing approvals, CRD filings, and membership and branch-office registrations.
The changes are contained in Regulatory Notice 12-32.
Finra said it needs to hike fees to cover increased costs of regulating an increasingly complex business.
The higher fees for reviews of advertising materials and corporate financings will take effect July 2. Reviews of printed material and video or audio media will be $125 for the first 10 pages, up from $100. The fee for expedited review of the first 10 pages will be $600 per item, up from $500. The fee for over 10 pages will be $50 per page, double the current $25.
Finra reviews initial and secondary offerings of unseasoned issuers, certain direct-participation programs and real estate investment trusts. The cost of these reviews will go from 0.01% to 0.015% of the maximum aggregate offering price, with the maximum fee going from $75,500 to $225,500.
Finra said it hasn't increased advertising review fees since 2005, and its corporate finance fee rate since 1970.
Member application fees will also jump next month, July 23. Fees for new-member applications will go from the current range of from $3,000 to $5,000, to a range of $7,500 to $55,000, with an additional $5,000 charge for new clearing or carrying firms.
Finra said it hasn't changed new-member fees since 1994.
In addition, a brand-new continuing-membership application fee will be implemented. This fee, charged to firms seeking approval for material changes in their businesses, will range from $5,000 to $100,000, depending on the size of the firm and type of change.
Beginning Jan. 2, Finra will charge higher fees for Central Registration Depository filings and branch-office registrations.
Registering an individual with a new Form U4 filing will cost $100, up from $85.
This fee has remained the same since 1995, Finra said.
Amended Form U4s and U5s will cost $110, up from $95.
Finra is also increasing to $45, from $30, the annual system processing charge for each registered representative. This fee has not been increased since January 2000, Finra said.
Various fingerprint processing fees are also going up. In addition, Finra is going to start charging for the mass transfers of registrations when one firm combines with another.
In addition, penalties for late disclosures are going up from $10 per day to $100 for the first day, and $25 for each subsequent day, up to a maximum of 60 days. The maximum amount for the late-disclosure fee will increase to $1,575, from $300.
The current late-disclosure fee has been in effect since 2004, Finra said.
Annual branch-office registrations will go from a flat $75 per office to a sliding scale of $175 for the first 250 offices down to $75 for each office over 2,000. Finra will continue to waive the fee for one branch office per member firm per year.
The fee hike proposals were filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission this week, under an immediate-approval process, and got the go-ahead. The SEC is now taking comment on the increases, though.