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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...

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...

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,...

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...

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...

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...

Tax reform plans seen as too tame

November 7, 2005

WASHINGTON - Some financial advisers are disappointed that the President's Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform didn't go farther than it did in advocating sweeping reforms, even though some proposals are considered by others as too controversial...

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...

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...

Riskier counterparts to money funds seek a wider audience

October 31, 2005

NEW YORK - More investors may soon gain access to what essentially are higher-risk counterparts to money market funds which traditionally have been open only to institutional and wealthy investors. Following the lead of Reserve Management Co....

Advisers seek profit angle in Bernanke nod

October 31, 2005

SAN FRANCISCO - Most experts and politicians are thrilled to put Ben S. Bernanke behind the steering wheel of the U.S. economy, but financial advisers say that they are more interested in how it will affect their investments. The nomination...

CFA Institute would tighten financial-reporting standards

October 31, 2005

WASHINGTON - The organization that set the gold standard for how mutual fund companies report fund performance wants rulemakers to require public companies to put more of their financial obligations on their books, including pension debt. On...

Portability arrives for variable annuities

October 31, 2005

IRVINE, Calif. - Annuities are becoming more portable. The Depository Trust and Clearing Corp. of New York has launched a new service, ACATS/IPS, that electronically transfers annuity account information between brokerage firms. ACATS is the...

Hedge fund activism concerns advocates of corporate governance

October 31, 2005

WASHINGTON - Hedge funds have become leaders of the shareholder activism movement, and they have some groups changing sides on the corporate-governance debate. Shareholder activism and access to company proxy ballots have been pushed by unions...

ACLI, members at odds over NASD

October 24, 2005

WASHINGTON - While the American Council of Life Insurers is looking to make nice with NASD, some of its members are talking about suing the regulatory agency. Both Gary Hughes, ACLI executive vice president, and a lawyer who represents insurance...

Some fear decline of 403(b) plans under new law

October 24, 2005

NEW YORK - Brokers and financial planners who sell to retirement plans for non-profit institutions such as public schools could see their livelihoods wiped out by coming changes in the tax code that would make it more difficult to service 403(b)...

SEC requests industry group help in training

October 24, 2005

WASHINGTON - The Securities and Exchange Commission has asked the hedge fund industry to help train SEC staff to inspect the estimated 1,260 hedge fund investment advisers expected to register by February. The SEC's office of compliance inspections...

NASAA publishes list of considerations for reg actions

October 17, 2005

WASHINGTON - State securities regulators have published a list of considerations to be taken into account when punishing brokerage firms for regulatory violations. While the brokerage industry supports the action, state regulators clearly want...

Congress close to passing measure on 401(k) advice

October 17, 2005

WASHINGTON - Congress is getting closer to enacting pension legislation that will make it easier for 401(k) participants to get investment advice. But lobbyists for financial planners question whether the Department of Labor will be able to...

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