Blog by Bill Singer WEEKLY REVIEW

November 8, 2014

When it comes to FINRA, I think it fair to say that I am a critic. I like to think that much of my commentary is fair and based upon a somewhat objective analysis of facts and sanctions. I appreciate that FINRA may not always feel that I am objective and, frankly, probably takes a dim view of my repeat critiques.  The self-regulatory organization and I have been somewhat adverse for over 25 years, and my sense of things is that there is little likelihood that they will win me over to their view, or vice versa. In that spirit, let me praise FINRA for barring someone from the industry who truly appears to have needed to be stopped; however, let me also criticize FINRA for placing this respondent in a somewhat more flattering light than I think he deserved.  Today's kerfuffle between FINRA and me focuses on sins of omission and commission in the AWC. This time, however, I can refer you to the coverage of the same case by a state regulator and give you an opportunity to compare what was and what wasn't said.... Read On
A recent FINRA regulatory settlement asks us to consider an in-house compliance effort that "repeatedly" asked a registered person to stop using an outside email account. What is not explained is why repeated requests were necessary -- or how many requests added up to whatever was deemed to be "repeatedly." Clearly, the indefatigable self-regulatory organization is targeting the misuse of social media and email.  What is a little less clear -- and in need of some fine tuning -- is the content of some of FINRA's published regulatory settlements. Here is just another example... Read On
According to a recent FINRA regulatory settlement, a registered representative faxed an account statement to a customer. That got a fine and suspension. End of story. Finished. Done.  Well, maybe . . . maybe not. When you go online and read the published records on FINRA's BrokerCheck, a somewhat different story emerges. How are we supposed to do we account for the disparity? Why didn't the AWC address the more expansive allegations noted on BrokerCheck? Hey, I dunno. I can't always make sense out of what FINRA does and doesn't do. You take a shot at it for a change... Read On
Stockbroker, Compliance, Legal, and Regulatory #wallstreetjobs @brokeandbroker... Read On
You only get so many bites of the same apple. In litigation, you only get so many chances to settle a dispute -- and once you sign on the dotted line of that settlement and release document, you don't get another shot to go back for more (unless the other party has breached the terms of the settlement contract).  In the immortal words of that great Wall Street professional Engelbert Humperdinck, "please release me, let me go."  See the article below, however, for someone who didn't quite get Engelbert's message...Read On