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FINRA Congratulates Gary Gensler on his Confirmation as SEC Chairman

April 14, 2021
Volume 15


  • Regulatory Notice
  • New FAQ

Upcoming Deadlines and Effective Dates
  • FINRA Request for Comment
  • Upcoming Effective Dates

Education and Compliance Programs

FINRA’s 2021 Entitlement User Accounts Certification Period is April 19 – July 19. FINRA's Annual User Accounts Certification Process begins Monday, April 19, 2021. During this period, Super Account Administrators (SAAs) certify that individuals have the appropriate level of access to FINRA systems required to perform their job responsibilities or remove access if no longer required. For detailed information, refer to the Annual Entitlement User Accounts Certification Process page.

FINRA congratulates Gary Gensler on his confirmation as Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission. Chairman Gensler brings to the Commission an outstanding record of public service, deep expertise in the functioning of our capital markets, and consistent advocacy for the interests of investors. We look forward to working with Chairman Gensler to advance our shared mission of protecting investors and ensuring market integrity.


FINRA Reminds Members About Options Account Approval, Supervision and Margin Requirements

With the recent increase in the number of customers seeking to open brokerage accounts and trade options, FINRA reminds members in Regulatory Notice 21-15 of the requirements for determining whether to approve a customer to trade options. Regardless of whether the account is self-directed or options are being recommended, members must perform due diligence on the customer and collect information about the customer to support a determination that options trading is appropriate for the customer. In addition, FINRA reminds members that options accounts are subject to specific supervisory reviews, including, among others, reviewing the compatibility of options transactions with investment objectives and with the types of transactions for which the account was approved, and are subject to other FINRA rules that apply when opening customer accounts, including among others, customer identification requirements under anti-money laundering rules. FINRA also reminds members of the margin requirements for options transactions.

New Margin Balance Reporting FAQ

FINRA has published a set of answers to frequently asked questions to aid members with their margin balance reporting obligations under FINRA Rule 4521(d). The guidance applies only to members that need to report data pursuant to that rule. Members are reminded that they should use the Customer Margin Balance Form, available on FINRA Gateway, for all reporting under Rule 4521(d). Members may contact their Risk Monitoring Analyst with questions about the guidance.

 Upcoming Deadlines and Effective Dates

FINRA Request for Comment

FINRA seeks comment on proposed amendments to Rule 4210 (Margin Requirements) that would clarify and incorporate into the rule current interpretations regarding when issued and other extended settlement transactions, and provide relief to facilitate the application of the rule to these transactions. See Regulatory Notice 21-11 for the proposed rule text and additional information. The comment period expires May 14, 2021.

Upcoming Effective Dates

In Regulatory Notice 21-09, FINRA adopted new rules to address brokers with a significant history of misconduct and the broker-dealers that employ them. Amendments to the FINRA Rule 9200 Series, FINRA Rule 9300 Series and FINRA Rule 9556 become effective on April 15, 2021.

In Regulatory Notice 21-04, FINRA amended its Codes of Arbitration Procedure for Customer and Industry Disputes to: (1) increase the additional hearing-day honorarium chairs receive for each hearing on the merits from $125 to $250 and (2) create a new $125 chair honorarium for each prehearing conference in which the chair participates. To fund the increase in payments to chairs, the amendments make minimal increases to certain arbitration fees. The amendments are effective for arbitration cases filed on or after April
 19, 2021.

 Education and Compliance Programs

Register today for FINRA's premier event—the 2021 FINRA Annual Conference. Join us virtually May 18-20 as practitioners, peers and regulators exchange ideas on timely compliance and regulatory topics. Plus—secure your spot at virtual networking events to meet peers in your firm grouping, reconnect with fellow FINRA Alums, or learn more about the CRCP® Program or how to get involved with FINRA. Seating is limited for Networking Events this year – register by Friday, April 16 to secure your networking event spot(s).

Virtual Compliance Boot Camps are almost sold out! These one-hour interactive virtual classroom sessions include training on a variety of topics including Cybersecurity, Anti-Money Laundering (AML), and Social Media and Digital Communications, and provide an opportunity to learn from and work closely with FINRA subject matter experts. Select your sessions and register today.

Register for these upcoming FINRA events:

  • Virtual Technology Conference | June 23, 2021 – Registration coming soon!
  • FINRA Institute at Georgetown Certified Regulatory and Compliance Professional Program
    Week I | July 18-23, 2021
  • Advertising Regulation Conference |
    October 14-15, 2021 | Washington, DC
  • Small Firm Conference | October 27-28, 2021 |
    Santa Monica, CA
  • FINRA Institute at Georgetown Certified Regulatory and Compliance Professional® Program
    Week II | November 14-19, 2021

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