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FINRA Releases 2020 Industry Snapshot

August 5, 2020
Volume 31


Upcoming Deadlines and Effective Dates
  • FINRA Requests for Comment
  • FINRA Elections

Education and Compliance Programs

FINRA and NASAA are continuing to work together to deliver an online testing service for candidates seeking to take qualification exams remotely. Candidates and firms should find increasing availability for test appointments for FINRA's Securities Industry Essentials (SIE), Series 6 and Series 7 exams, and NASAA's Series 63, Series 65 and Series 66 exams, as Prometric is reporting additional seating capacity in many of their test centers. FINRA and NASAA expect to continue increasing online appointment availability throughout August. FINRA will continue to monitor program performance under increased volume and will adjust as necessary. FINRA and NASAA encourage firms and candidates to utilize a combination of online testing as well as testing at an available local test center as we work with Prometric to increase online capacity. More information on test center openings and availability can be found on FINRA’s website.

FINRA has published the 2020 FINRA Industry Snapshot, the annual statistical report on the brokerage firms, registered representatives and market activity that FINRA regulates. The latest edition includes data ranging from the size and geographic distribution of the firms FINRA regulates to the number of individuals in the industry, and from trading activity to how firms market their products and services.

Upcoming Deadlines and Effective Dates

FINRA Requests for Comment

FINRA encourages comments on its recent paper on Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the Securities Industry, including areas where guidance or modifications to FINRA rules may be desired to support adoption of AI applications while maintaining investor protection and market integrity. Comments are requested by August 31, 2020.

FINRA requests comment in Regulatory Notice 20-24 on two proposed changes to the TRACE reporting rules that were recommended by the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Fixed Income Market Structure Advisory Committee. The proposed changes would require firms to: (1) identify corporate bond trades where the price of the trade is based on a spread to a benchmark Treasury security that was agreed upon earlier in the day (i.e., a “delayed Treasury spot trade”) and report the time at which the spread was agreed upon; and (2) identify corporate bond trades that are a part of a larger portfolio trade.
The comment period expires September 14, 2020.

FINRA Elections

FINRA will conduct its Annual Meeting of firms on Friday, August 7, 2020. The purpose of the meeting is to elect individuals to fill one small firm seat and one large firm seat on the FINRA Board of Governors. Firms that are members of FINRA as of the close of business on Tuesday, July 7, 2020, are eligible to vote. See Election Notice 7/8/20 for information about the voting methods and candidate profiles.


 Education and Compliance Programs

Register today for a Virtual Compliance Boot Camp. These one-hour live, interactive classroom sessions cover Cybersecurity, AML and Social Media topics and provide an opportunity to learn from and work closely with FINRA subject matter experts in a small group setting. Participants gain valuable insights on compliance activities for immediate application in the workplace. Space is limited.

The recording of the latest Small Firm Conference Call is now available for FINRA members. On the call, Robert Cook and Vice President and Deputy of Member Relations and Education Kayte Toczylowski were joined by FINRA senior leaders to discuss recent updates, including the new FAQ about exemption reporting under SEA Rule 15c3-3, how to adjust supervisory systems to a remote work environment, and recent guidance on retail communications concerning private placement offerings.

Register to join the Securities and Exchange Commission, Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board, and FINRA for the virtual Compliance Outreach Program for Municipal Advisors. The webcast program will be held Thursday, August 13, 2020, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. ET. Registration is open to all municipal advisory industry professionals.

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