Q. I am a registered investment adviser and also a registered representative of an NASD member firm. I have a seminar presentation that discusses basic financial information like how the markets work, factors to consider in allocating assets, the risks of investing and descriptions of securities products, like mutual funds and tax credit limited partnerships. What are my obligations, under NASD rules, in terms of the seminar itself, or any advertising I might do for the seminar?
A. If you will participate in the execution of transactions in specific securities offered at the seminar by investors who attended the seminar, then the seminar and advertisements for it are deemed communications on behalf of your NASD member firm's securities business. Consequently, both the seminar presentation and the advertisements must comply with the standards for communications with the public set forth in Rule 2210.
The content of the advertisements and your remarks at the seminar (even if they are made without the aide of a script, outline, or notes), must adhere to the general and specific standards for communications included in the Rule. For example, the content must be accurate and must provide sufficient information for the attendees to evaluate the facts with respect to the securities products or services discussed. You must disclose that securities transactions will be made through the NASD member firm.
If you advertise for the seminar or use a script, outline, slides or handouts, you must provide these materials to the NASD member firm for written principal approval prior to their use. Because the seminar concerns investment company securities (i.e., mutual funds) and direct participation programs (i.e., tax credit limited partnerships), your NASD member firm will have to file those sections of the seminar materials with the Department within 10 days of first use.