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Index annuity suitability debated

November 28, 2005

NEW YORK - Broker-dealers may have to start paying the same attention to equity index annuity client screening that they do to variable annuity screening, according to industry observers. But it may not be easy. "Broker-dealers lack an understanding...

Rising compliance costs sting midtier asset managers most

November 21, 2005

NEW YORK - While asset managers of all sizes have had to cope with increased compliance costs, those with $100 million to $1 billion in assets under management have been suffering the most. That was among the findings of a survey of 183 asset...

NASD may not require VA comparisons

November 21, 2005

WASHINGTON - NASD is considering dropping a proposed requirement that registered representatives and their supervisors compare variable annuities with other securities before recommendations can be made for variable annuities, according to an...

Canada's election sharpens financial issues

November 21, 2005

OTTAWA - How will the upcoming Canadian election affect the financial services industry? It is a truism that business detests uncertainty. And true to form, the Canadian dollar fell last Monday as currency traders responded to the increasing...

NYSE slaps Schwab with $1 million fine

November 21, 2005

WASHINGTON - A $1 million fine announced last week against Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. highlights problems the San Francisco-based firm has had overseeing the independent advisers who use its services. New York Stock Exchange Regulation, a division...

Thankful for booming biz, aging boomers

November 21, 2005

WASHINGTON - As the nation prepares for its annual autumnal feast, financial advisers are thankful for having had a prosperous year and are salivating over the crop of baby boomers who begin turning 60 next year. Many advisers said they've seen...

Details impede disbursements of settlement cash

November 21, 2005

NEW YORK - The billions in mutual fund settlement cash that resulted from the fund trading scandals should make its way into investors' pockets by the summer, but not before a few wrinkles are ironed out with two federal agencies. The U.S. Department...

Congress moves to spur pension growth, advice

November 21, 2005

WASHINGTON - As the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. last week announced a $23 billion shortfall, Congress began moving on pension legislation that would ease the way to providing investment advice and automatically enrolling employees in 401(k)...

SIA talks tough on duplicative rules

November 21, 2005

IRVINE, Calif. - Securities Industry Association executives have gone on the offensive against what they regard as overlapping regulations and enforcement actions by states, but state regulators are questioning their motives. The incoming SIA...

Wirehouses' piece of fund pie shrinks as regulatory heat rises

November 14, 2005

IRVINE, Calif. - Amid increased concern over inviting more scrutiny from regulators, in-house mutual funds run by big brokerage firms continue to lose stature in the fund industry. Assets in so-called proprietary funds run by brokers accounted...

Janus attempts to quell new merger speculation

November 14, 2005

BOSTON - Persistent rumors that Janus Capital Group Inc. is about to be acquired, or is gearing up to make an acquisition of its own, are false, sources in and out of the company say. Janus has been the subject of periodic takeover speculation...

Compliance constraints too onerous for some

November 14, 2005

SAN FRANCISCO - She is but a solitary breakaway broker, but Mary Ann Lambert may represent the other side of the compliance coin in terms of where financial advisers decide to set up shop. Some independent advisers want to become part of a larger...

Rebukes exchanged in battle over rule on fund directors

November 14, 2005

IRVINE, Calif. - Acrimony is heating up in a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce against the Securities and Exchange Commission. The suit involves the SEC rule passed last year requiring that the chairman and at least 75% of the...

Most firms already fail SEC exams

November 14, 2005

WASHINGTON - The "vast majority" of Securities and Exchange Commission registered investment advisory firms receive deficiency letters after SEC examinations, and the new rule requiring that they have written policies and procedures is likely...

Fraudsters pose as broker firms

November 14, 2005

NEW YORK - At least 75 broker-dealers' identities have been stolen by scam artists, according to sources familiar with the Securities and Exchange Commission's tracking of such "mirror fraud." Using nearly the same names of legitimate firms,...

Critics slam limits on independent research

November 7, 2005

NEW YORK - Money managers could be shortchanging their investors by limiting the amount of independent investment research they are willing to pay for, critics of such limitations charge. "This is a case where the tail is wagging the dog," said...

Some reps see changes to marketing, sales fees

November 7, 2005

NEW YORK - Some registered representatives are seeing losses or gains to their incomes as mutual fund companies jockey to pay reps for selling funds amid an ever-shifting regulatory landscape. A variety of brokers have seen recent changes from...

Brokers decry cost, confusion of Merrill rule

November 7, 2005

NEW YORK - With only three months to go before the implementation of the Securities and Exchange Commission's latest revision of the so-called Merrill Lynch rule of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, compliance concerns are mounting among...

Identity theft hits online brokerage accounts

November 7, 2005

NEW YORK - The ugly reality of identify theft is seeping into the brokerage business. Securities regulators clearly are concerned. Last Thursday, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued a guide to investors about steps they could take...

Reps cry foul over sales of index annuities

November 7, 2005

IRVINE-A dispute is brewing between brokers and insurance agents over sales of equity index annuities. Brokers are hot about losing annuity customers to insurance agents and are accusing agents of misrepresenting the products. Insurance industry...

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