Small Firms Information
FINRA has created this page to provide information for the small firm community—those firms with 150 or fewer registered representatives. This page contains current and past communications, links of interest to small firms, and other information.
January 2, 2019
FINRA Contact System (FCS) Annual Verification Due
Firms are required by FINRA Rule 4517 to complete an annual verification of their FCS contact information within the first 17 business days of each calendar year. This year’s deadline is Friday, January 25, 2019. Please log in to the FCS and perform your annual verification.
If you have questions on how to complete your annual FCS verification, please review the FCS guides or call the FINRA Gateway Call Center at (301) 869-6699.
December 20, 2018
Report on Selected Cybersecurity Practices – 2018 is a detailed review of effective information-security controls at securities firms. The report is designed to help broker-dealers – including small firms – further develop their cybersecurity programs. The report addresses areas that firms tend to find most challenging: cybersecurity controls in branch offices; methods of limiting phishing attacks; identifying and mitigating insider threats; elements of a strong penetration-testing program; and establishing and maintaining controls on mobile devices.
December 18, 2018
Our third Small Firm Report took place on Tuesday, November 27. FINRA Chief Executive Officer Robert Cook, was joined by Senior Vice President of Member Relations and Education Chip Jones, Senior Vice President of Investor Education Gerri Walsh and Senior Director of Advertising Regulation Amy Sochard to discuss:
- New Research on Millennial Investors and Implication for Industry
- Digital Communications and Social Media Compliance
A recording of the call is now available to FINRA member firms. Register for access.
December 7, 2018
Then take a look at this new Firm Renewal Report job aid, which walks you through how to determine the annual renewal fees assessed for each registered individual associated with your firm. This information could be particularly useful to firms who charge their representatives for some or all of their renewal costs.
October 1, 2018
Materials from the SIE Exam and Exam Restructuring Calls
FINRA's Registration and Disclosure Department is holding a series of conference calls to discuss the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam, the restructure of representative-level qualification exams, and the consolidation of registration rules that took effect October 1, 2018.
- Download slides from the September 18 call
- Download slides from the September 5 call
- Download slides from the August 15 call
- Download slides from the July 31 call
September 13, 2018
Senior Vice President of Member Relations and Education, talks with Wendy Lanton, Chief Compliance Officer of Lantern Investments and Chair of the Small Firm Advisory Committee (SFAC), about the SFAC and the work it does on behalf of small firms. The two provide an overview of the committee structure, the 2018 SFAC election, and information on how small firms can get more involved and raise issues to be addressed.
August 20, 2018
Small firms represent a critical portion of FINRA’s membership and often face regulatory challenges that are unique from their large firm counterparts. In an effort to provide additional compliance education, FINRA launched The Small Firm Report, a series of free conference calls featuring senior FINRA leaders who discuss trending topics, new rules and regulatory guidance and best practices.
View more details, including how to register.
July 16, 2018
May 15 – 17, 2019 | Washington, DC
Mark your calendar—the FINRA Annual Conference returns May 2019, and will include sessions and events specifically for small firms. Check out highlights from the 2018 event and register early to take advantage of the discounted rate for small firm in-person attendees.
May 1, 2018
FINRA published a Written Supervisory Procedures checklist for capital acquisition brokers (CABs). It outlines selected key topics, ranging from administration to supervision and oversight.
April 25, 2018
FINRA published a comprehensive progress report summarizing the significant operational and regulatory changes FINRA has made in the first year of its ongoing FINRA360 organizational review.
April 25, 2018
FINRA Investor Education published information to help investors better understand FINRA Rules Relating to Protecting Seniors from Financial Exploitation. Firms may use this to explain their ability to place a temporary hold on the disbursement of funds or securities and role of the trusted contact person.
April 4, 2018
FINRA updated the Anti-Money Laundering Template for Small Firms to reflect member firms’ obligations under FINRA Rule 3310 in light of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network’s (FinCEN) final rule on Customer Due Diligence Requirements for Financial Institutions (CDD Rule).
March 6, 2018
Small Firm Governors Request Support to Exclude Small Firms from PCAOB Requirement
The Small Firm Advisory Committee and FINRA's three small firm representatives elected to the FINRA Board of Governors are working independently, and separately from FINRA, with members of Congress, the SEC and the PCAOB in an effort to gain a small firm exclusion from the requirement to have their annual audit conducted by a PCAOB registered auditor.
FINRA is requesting that you "opt-in" to a separate email distribution list focused on the PCAOB issue. This will allow you to receive future updates about this important issue affecting small firms. If you are interested in hearing more about these efforts or assisting, please "opt-in" to this separate and distinct email distribution list by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide your contact information, phone number and email address.
January 9, 2018
Each year FINRA publishes its regulatory and exam priorities to highlight significant risks and issues that could adversely affect investors and market integrity in the coming year.
January 2, 2018
FINRA's Small Firm Conference focuses on small firms' practices and tips for complying with FINRA rules. Throughout the event, attendees have the opportunity to discuss small firm issues with FINRA senior staff.
The conference is scheduled for November 7 – 8, 2018, in Santa Monica, CA. Register today.
Now Available: On Demand Sessions From FINRA’s 2017 Small Firm Conference
Free recordings of all sessions from FINRA’s 2017 Small Firm Conference are now available to member firms and CRCP graduates. Visit the Small Firm Conference page to the recordings.
December 6, 2017
In response to requests from firms to make available a summary of observations from FINRA cycle examinations, FINRA published a Report on Examination Findings. The report, a key outcome of the FINRA360 initiative and CEO Robert Cook's listening tour, consolidates select observations from recent examinations that FINRA considers worth highlighting due to their potential impacts on investors and the markets, or the frequency with which they occur, and describes certain practices FINRA has observed to be effective in certain circumstances. The report includes a summary of additional observations to draw firms' attention to areas where operational deficiencies have challenged some firms' ability to meet their compliance obligations. The report allows firms to improve their compliance functions based on the experiences of other firms, and to better anticipate potential areas of concern before their own cycle examinations.
Read the Report on FINRA Examination Findings.
May 23, 2016
FINRA has created a Cybersecurity Checklist to assist small firms in establishing a cybersecurity program to identity and assess cybersecurity threats, protect assets from cyber intrusions, detect when their systems and assets have been compromised, plan for the response when a compromise occurs and implement a plan to recover lost, stolen or unavailable assets. This checklist is primarily derived from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework and FINRA's Report on Cybersecurity Practices. Use of this checklist does not create a "safe harbor" with respect to FINRA rules, federal or state securities laws, or other applicable federal or state regulatory requirements.
View the latest issue of the Quarterly Disciplinary Review, a summary sampling of recent disciplinary actions involving misconduct by registered representatives that call attention to, and remind registered representatives and firms of, specific conduct that violates FINRA rules and may result in disciplinary action.
The FINRA Rule Filing Status Report provides firms with a comprehensive list of FINRA rule filings currently pending with the SEC, as well as FINRA rule filings approved by the SEC, filed with the SEC for immediate effectiveness, or withdrawn within the last six months.