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SEC's SRO reform proposals figure to give NASD a new look

December 13, 2004

NEW YORK - The structure of NASD's board of governors could face an overhaul if the Securities and Exchange Commission's proposals for changing corporate governance of self-regulatory organizations are passed. Other potential changes at NASD...

Brokers, eyeing Monte Carlo, are warned that it can be dicey

December 13, 2004

CHICAGO - Two months away from being allowed to use Monte Carlo forecasting tools for the first time with clients, some broker-dealers are expressing a dose of skepticism. "The average adviser with the average customer doesn't use a tool quite...

Smith Barney's hard line costs it some veterans

November 29, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO - Smith Barney has once again refused to spin off an elite corps of its financial advisers who beseeched the firm to put them into a separate division - but this time, the New York-based wirehouse is paying a price. Some of the...

Shift by brokers, advisers hits money funds

November 15, 2004

DETROIT - A "quiet revolution" in the way brokers and advisers manage their clients' cash balances could represent the beginning of the end for money market mutual funds, according to a new study of cash management practices in the financial...

Merrill exec sees glass as half full

November 15, 2004

BOCA RATON, Fla. - James Gorman, president of the New York-based Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc.'s global private-client group, certainly seems to be in a good mood these days. At the New York- and Washington-based Securities Industry Association's...

Advisers selling DC plans must improve fee disclosure

November 1, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO - Advisers who sell defined contribution plans need to be proactive in disclosing fees to plan sponsors, including how much they're being compensated, said the U.S. Department of Labor's chief enforcement officer for employee retirement...

Merrill adds reps, builds fee-based biz

October 25, 2004

NEW YORK - Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc. of New York is increasing its number of registered representatives as well as building its fee-based-brokerage business. The firm said in its earnings report this month that it has added 600 registered representatives...

Broker execs mull creating SRO

October 25, 2004

NEW YORK - Saying they are fed up with NASD's aggressive regulatory stance, some broker-dealer executives are discussing breaking away from their present self-regulatory organization and creating a new industry group. And the executives are...

Broker-dealers brace for upcoming regulatory changes

October 4, 2004

NEW YORK - As registered representatives continue to be concerned about the pace of regulators' proposals concerning sales practices, their broker-dealers brace for the coming changes. That much was clear here last week at the New York- and...

Hundreds of planners write off Merrill rule

October 4, 2004

WASHINGTON - Hundreds of financial planners have written to the Securities and Exchange Commission urging the withdrawal of the so-called Merrill Lynch rule, or demanding at least better disclosure by brokers. The financial planners appear to...

Rush to comply leaves some reps caught in middle

October 4, 2004

NEW YORK - Some registered representatives are feeling increasingly punch-drunk from the un-precedented rush to regulate the securities industry, according to brokers, executives with broker-dealers, attorneys and recruiters. On one side, there...

A rush to head off 529 regs

September 27, 2004

NEW YORK - As the mutual fund scandals continue to gallop across newspaper headlines, state officials who run the fast-growing but increasingly scrutinized Section 529 college savings plans are in the middle of a high-stakes battle to prove...

Most big brokers find ways to continue extra loss protection

September 27, 2004

WASHINGTON - About a year ago, many insurance carriers stopp-ed selling certain policies that brokerage houses buy to provide extra protection for their customers in case investment firms fail. Insurers such as Travelers Property Casualty Corp....

Profits are a mixed bag at big investment banks

September 27, 2004

NEW YORK - Big investment banks shot both over and under analysts' earnings estimates last week, but common themes emerged. Trading revenue in some businesses was down, and the summer's sluggish environment on Wall Street slowed the recent steady...

Merrill, firefighters' group going national with counseling

September 27, 2004

NEW YORK - Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc. of New York and the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation plan to go national with a program that provides free financial counseling and workshops to families of firefighters who have lost their lives. The...

SEC reopens Merrill rule debate

August 30, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO - The Financial Planning Association last week aimed a second legal barrage at the Securities and Exchange Commission over the so-called Merrill Lynch rule but then held its fire. In a follow-up to its July 27 lawsuit against the...

Wirehouse, regional reps face uncertain times

August 9, 2004

NEW YORK - Although the major market indexes were up more than 20% last year, the number of employee retail brokers at wirehouses and regional firms fell slightly. But as the stock market rallied strongly last year, registered representatives...

Banks make inroads into separates business

July 12, 2004

DETROIT - The banking industry may have finally found its "in" to the investment management business. While banks have been trying for years to break into asset management by selling mutual funds, many are now turning toward separately managed...

Next for Lincoln: Pay overhaul

June 28, 2004

NEW YORK - Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp. of Fort Wayne, Ind., has spent the past year going through a reorganization of its top executives and network of registered representatives. Now it is preparing to change how it pays its brokers and...

Big changes in store for deferred-comp plans

June 28, 2004

WASHINGTON - Deferred- compensation plans used by most executives would have to be changed under legislation likely to be enacted this year. Financial advisers are worried that the changes would make the plans harder to use and less flexible....

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