Are you keeping pace with the hot topics of our industry? Staying current and compliant is not always easy with the frequency of regulatory change. In fact, it’s been said that our industry is a victim of “regulatory whiplash” these days.
Regulatory changes and examination priorities often lay the groundwork for continuing education priorities, changes in company procedures, and new exam topics. To keep you in the know about these priorities, below is a list of five of this year’s hot topics:
- Recidivist brokers: These are reps with repeat disclosures or complaints in their backgrounds. Do firms have appropriate hiring and supervisory procedures for dealing with the added risks?
- Senior investors: Every year, about 6 million of this over age-60 demographic are swindled out of more than $2.9 billion. Do firms have the right controls to protect senior investors from fraud, abuse and improper advice? Are they monitoring against microcap fraud schemes, which have recently targeted and been damaging to this vulnerable group?
- Cyber Security: Is the industry responding to these threats as one of their top concerns? Are employees aware of new avenues of attacks, and are procedures in place to help reduce vulnerabilities?
- Social media and electronic communications, retention and supervision: Have firms updated compliance and supervisory procedure for today’s communication channels? Do reps and associated persons know the rules and limitations?
- Supervisory Controls: Although this topic is expansive, a couple of areas that are in the spotlight are whether firms can monitor and detect short-term trading of long-term investments, and concentrations of positions within accounts. These concerns relate to suitability obligations – a topic that is never far down the list.
Two Publications to Keep You Aware
The list above only scratches the surface. See below for two excellent resources that give you more depth on these and many other hot topics.
- http://www.cecouncil.com/media/266407/q1-2017-fea.pdf. The industry’s Continuing Education Council regularly prepares a Firm Element Advisory to help with the preparation of the firm’s training plan for the year. This link provides 53 pages of guidance and topics suggested for training in 2017.
- http://www.finra.org/industry/2017-regulatory-and-examination-priorities-letter. Early in each new year, FINRA publishes its annual Regulatory and Examination Priorities Letter. It provides excellent guidance for regulatory exam preparation and training, by identifying areas of high risk that examiners will be checking.
Why We Care
Knopman Marks Financial Training is committed to ensuring Series exam candidates are well prepared and confident about their exam experience. We carefully monitor regulatory changes and new areas of focus – like those listed above — to be sure our exam prep materials reflect the most current topics as test banks change. We are here to help every step of the way. Check back often for more timely information to keep you in the know! Contact us at [email protected] with any questions.