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SEC's proposed advice rule is about as clear as mud

September 22, 2018

The effort by the Securities and Exchange Commission to clarify for consumers the differing standards of financial professionals could be all for naught. While we give the SEC credit for attempting to salvage some of the momentum and investor-protection...

Clayton declines to set timeline for final SEC advice rule

September 21, 2018

Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Jay Clayton won't set a deadline for the agency to complete its work on investment advice reform. "I have no specific date set yet," Mr. Clayton told reporters Thursday night in Baltimore, following...

Ladenburg chairman Phillip Frost steps down

September 21, 2018

Dr. Phillip Frost, who was charged this month with fraud, said Thursday evening that he was retiring as non-executive chairman of Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. Dr. Frost and nine other individuals were charged Sept. 7 in a Securities...

Insurance executives push House to add annuity provision to tax reform bill

September 20, 2018

Executives from major insurance firms are pushing House leaders to amend tax-reform legislation to encourage the use of annuities in company retirement plans. In a Wednesday letter to House leaders, the corporate chiefs said that they were disappointed...

All clients deserve advice that is in their best interest

September 19, 2018

With all of the recent discussion about the standards of conduct for financial professionals, it is important to remember that there is one legal standard that has required professionals to act in the best interest of their clients for more...

SEC charges Michigan-based adviser in $2.7 million investment scam

September 19, 2018

The Securities and Exchange Commission charged a Michigan-based financial adviser with defrauding elderly retirees and other unsophisticated investors out of $2.7 million. ​ According to the SEC, Ernest J. Romer III persuaded at least 30 of...

401(k) adviser disclosures need an important update

September 17, 2018

A fiduciary serves a vital role in society. In the most basic form, a fiduciary is expected to make dispassionate decisions in the sole interest of the less informed. To serve in the role requires the fiduciary to embrace the twin duties of...

What's next for the SEC advice rule?

September 15, 2018

The Securities and Exchange Commission has gone farther in the last 18 months to reform investment advice standards than it ever has, but it's difficult to predict when it will cross the finish line. SEC chairman Jay Clayton made reform a top...

SEC advice rule contains a huge hole

September 15, 2018

The SEC's new advice reform package contains a huge hole. While some brokers will be forbidden to use the title financial adviser or advisor, another few hundred thousand will still be able to do so. The Securities and Exchange Commission's...

SEC penalizes RIA more than $2 million for 12b-1 violations

September 14, 2018

A Pennsylvania investment advisory firm on Friday agreed to pay $2.1 million in a settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission over sales of high-fee mutual fund share classes. In the order, the SEC alleged that from April 2013 through...

House committee passes open MEP bill

September 14, 2018

The House Ways and Means Committee passed a retirement savings bill Thursday that seeks to expand access to workplace retirement plans. The Family Savings Act of 2018, introduced by Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa., was approved in a 21-14 vote. Perhaps...

Fixed annuities are on a tear

September 14, 2018

Fixed annuities have been on a tear this year, with sales seeing double-digit growth across several product categories amid rising interest rates and easing regulatory pressure. Overall sales of individual fixed annuities were $33.7 billion...

RIA charged for not disclosing commissions earned from selling risky tech stock

September 14, 2018

The Securities and Exchange Commission is charging an investment advisory firm with selling $13 million of high-risk securities to public school teachers without disclosing the exorbitant commissions the firm collected. A complaint filed Friday...

House committee approves bill to ease audit requirements for small broker-dealers

September 13, 2018

The House Financial Services Committee approved legislation Thursday that would ease audit requirements for small broker-dealers. But the measure heads to the House floor on a 36-16 vote with the panel's top-ranking Democrat, Rep. Maxine Waters,...

Former Ameriprise broker accused of unethical conduct barred by Finra

September 13, 2018

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. has barred a former Ameriprise Financial broker after he failed to cooperate with an investigation into allegations of unethical conduct while at his firm. Jeffery Joseph Kelly, who starting working...

States try to beat back rate increases on long-term-care policies

September 13, 2018

States have taken steps to limit the drastic rate increases plaguing the long-term-care insurance market, leading some experts to suggest that these insurance policies are worth a second look for financial advisers and consumers. More than three...

Disclosures in SEC advice rule confuse, mislead investors, advocacy groups say

September 12, 2018

Disclosures contained in the Securities and Exchange Commission's investment advice reform proposal meant to clarify the differences between investment advisers and brokers confuse and mislead investors, several advocacy groups said Wednesday....

Stifel CEO Kruszewski named chairman of American Securities Association

September 12, 2018

Ronald J. Kruszewski, chairman and chief executive of Stifel Financial Corp., was named chairman of the American Securities Association on Wednesday, helming a group that represents regional financial firms in Washington. Mr. Kruszewski will...

Democrats urge SEC to strengthen broker standard in advice rule

September 12, 2018

Leading Democratic lawmakers are calling on the Securities and Exchange Commission to strengthen its proposal to raise investment advice standards for brokers, asserting it "falls woefully short." In a letter to SEC chairman Jay Clayton on Wednesday,...

Finra makes its first cryptocurrency bust

September 11, 2018

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. has charged former broker Timothy Ayre with securities fraud and the unlawful distribution of HempCoin, an unregistered cryptocurrency security. The case marks Finra's first disciplinary action...

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