News Release

ASIC and FINRA Sign Cooperation Agreement

MOU Aimed at Expediting, Strengthening Cross-Border Supervision, Investigations

WASHINGTON and SYDNEY — The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) today to promote and support greater cooperation between the two regulators.

The MOU establishes a strong framework for mutual assistance and the exchange of information between ASIC and FINRA, to help ensure that high standards of market integrity and consumer protection are maintained in both jurisdictions. Among other things, the agreement will help the regulators to investigate possible instances of cross-border market abuse in a timely manner, exchange information on firms under common supervision of both regulators, and allow more robust collaboration on approaches to risk-based supervision of firms.

The agreement was signed by ASIC Chairman Tony D'Aloisio and FINRA Chairman and CEO Richard Ketchum. ASIC and FINRA have a long history of cooperation in cross-border cases affecting both markets.

"Because the US and Australian financial markets are highly globalized, it is crucial to both agencies that we have effective cooperation agreements with key partner jurisdictions," Mr D'Aloisio said. "This MOU will enhance the supervision of financial markets in both Australia and the U.S. This is particularly important in light of ASIC's new market supervision responsibilities."

Mr Ketchum added, "Today's agreement is a true indication of the global reach of the capital markets. ASIC and FINRA will be able to share information more freely on firms we both oversee and collaborate more closely in dealing with cross-border fraud to better protect investors in the U.S. and Australia."

ASIC is Australia's corporate, markets and financial services regulator. It works to ensure Australia's financial markets are fair and transparent, supported by confident and informed investors and consumers. As markets regulator, ASIC oversees 16 financial markets. It is committed to markets operating with integrity and in a fair, orderly and transparent way. From the third quarter of this year ASIC will take over responsibility for front-line regulation of real-time trading in Australia's domestic licensed markets. As financial services regulator, ASIC licenses and monitors the activities of more than 4,800 financial services businesses to ensure they operate efficiently, fairly and honestly. ASIC also works to protect retail investors and financial consumers of all financial products and services, including credit. It works with Australian and international regulators on the regulatory reform agenda in financial markets, and gives advice to Australia's government to aid its policy formation and decision making.

FINRA is the largest non-governmental regulator for all securities firms doing business in the United States. FINRA is dedicated to investor protection and market integrity through effective and efficient regulation and complementary compliance and technology-based services. FINRA touches virtually every aspect of the securities business – from registering and educating all industry participants to examining securities firms, writing and enforcing rules and the federal securities laws, informing and educating the investing public, providing trade reporting and other industry utilities, and administering the largest dispute resolution forum for investors and registered firms. For more information, please visit