FINRA, in conjunction with other self-regulatory organizations and the Securities Industry/Regulatory Council on Continuing Education, administers the continuing education program for the securities industry. Continuing education consists of two mandatory programs: a Regulatory Element and a Firm Element. (See FINRA Rule 1250).
The Regulatory Element requires all registered individuals to complete a computer-based training program within 120 days of the second anniversary of their registration approval dates and every three years thereafter. The program focuses on compliance, regulatory, ethical and sales practice standards. Its content is derived from industry rules and regulations, as well as widely accepted standards and practices within the industry. Regulatory Element Programs have been developed for registered supervisors/principals (S201), Series 99 Operations Professionals (S901), Series 6 Investment Company Products/Variable Contracts Representatives (S106), and the General Program (S101) for Series 7 registrants and individuals in other registration categories not covered by the other programs.
The Regulatory Element Programs consist of updated content and an interactive format. Registered representatives scheduled to take an S201, S901, S106 or S101 session should review the following tools to prepare for the revised programs.
The Proprietary Trader Continuing Education program (S501) is designed to reinforce the knowledge of rules and regulations as they pertain to the securities markets, trading and prohibited practices, investment strategies and products as applicable to the role of a Proprietary Trader. The S501 program will be comprised of two modules. The content within the Program uses Primary Learning Objectives (PLO) to deliver the educational message. The PLOs are mainly derived from rules and regulations as well as standards and practices, although the specific requirements of certain rules may differ slightly among the various SROs/Exchanges. The Proprietary Trader Continuing Education Program requires all registered individuals to complete a computer-based training program within 120 days of the second anniversary of their registration approval dates and every three years thereafter.
The Firm Element requires broker-dealers to establish a formal training program to keep covered registered persons up-to-date on job- and product-related subjects. In planning, developing and implementing the Firm Element, each broker-dealer must consider its size, structure, scope of business and regulatory concerns. Each broker-dealer must administer its Firm Element Continuing Education Program in accordance with its annual Needs Analysis and Written Training Plan, and must maintain records documenting the content of the program and completion of the program.
FINRA publishes the Securities Industry Regulatory Council’s Firm Element Advisory, which identifies and recommends pertinent regulation and sales practice issues for firms to consider including in their Firm Element training plans.
For more information, visit the Securities Industry/Regulatory Council on Continuing Education (CE Council) Web site, which contains a wide range of continuing education information and publications regarding the Regulatory Element and Firm Element.
Questions regarding FINRA Rule 1250 and the Continuing Education Program may be directed to the Gateway Call Center at (301) 869-6699.