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Register Today for the Small Firm Conference Call

November 11, 2020
Volume 45


  • UPC Advisories

Upcoming Deadlines and Effective Dates
  • FINRA Requests for Comment
  • SEC Requests for Comment on FINRA Rules
  • Renewals
  • Elections

Education and Compliance Programs

Tune in to the latest episode of the FINRA Unscripted podcast. On this episode, the second of a two-part series, we look at how AML risks may overlap with a firm’s efforts to protect senior investors from exploitation and fraud. Joining us are Jason Foye and Brooke Hickman from FINRA’s National Cause and Financial Crimes Detection Program. Listen to the podcast.

In response to COVID-19, FINRA has administratively postponed all in-person arbitration and mediation proceedings scheduled through January 31, 2021, unless the parties stipulate to proceed telephonically or by Zoom or the panel orders that the hearings will take place telephonically or by Zoom. For more information, visit FINRA’s website.

In response to the ongoing safety concerns and the operational challenges posed by the sustained COVID-19 pandemic, FINRA has adopted temporary Supplementary Material .17 (Temporary Relief to Allow Remote Inspections for Calendar Year 2020 and Calendar Year 2021) under FINRA Rule 3110 (Supervision) to provide member firms the option, subject to specified requirements under the supplementary material, to complete remotely their calendar year 2020 and calendar year 2021 inspection obligations under FINRA Rule 3110(c) (Internal Inspections), without an on-site visit to the office or location.

Registration is now open for the upcoming Small Firm Conference Call on Tuesday, November 17, at 4:30 p.m. ET. FINRA President and CEO Robert Cook and Vice President of Member Relations and Education Kayte Toczylowski will be joined by FINRA staff to discuss recent FINRA updates and technology changes including CE Transformation, FINRA Gateway and CAT.


UPC Advisories

The following UPC Advisories were published in the last week:

  • UPC #43-20: Pier 1 Imports, Inc. (PIRRQ)
  • UPC #44-20: Hi-Crush Inc. (HCRSQ)

Upcoming Deadlines and Effective Dates

FINRA Requests for Comment

FINRA requests comment in Regulatory Notice 20-36 on a concept proposal regarding the application of FINRA rules to security-based swaps (SBS) following the SEC’s completion of its rulemaking regarding SBS dealers and major SBS participants. The comment period expires November 16, 2020.

FINRA requests comment in Regulatory Notice 20-33 on proposed formal procedures for bringing actions against non-associated persons who cheat or misbehave during a FINRA qualification examination. The proposed formal procedures—a new expedited proceeding rule—would also strengthen the existing processes for responding to cheating and misbehavior by associated persons during a FINRA qualification examination. FINRA also is proposing related amendments to FINRA’s registration requirements rule and eligibility proceedings rules. The comment period expires November 23, 2020.

FINRA requests comment in Regulatory Notice 20-34 on proposed amendments to Rule 2165 (Financial Exploitation of Specified Adults) to extend the hold period and to allow temporary holds on securities transactions to further address suspected financial exploitation of senior investors. The Notice also summarizes the retrospective rule review process, including the predominant themes that emerged from stakeholder feedback and resulting actions, and provides guidance to aid member firms and senior investors. The comment period expires December 4, 2020.

SEC Requests for Comment on FINRA Rules

The SEC requests comment on FINRA's proposal to amend the Code of Arbitration Procedure for Customer Disputes and the Code of Arbitration Procedure for Industry Disputes to increase arbitrator chairperson honoraria and certain arbitration fees. The comment period expires November 16, 2020. See the Federal Register notice

The SEC requests comment on FINRA’s proposal to modify TRACE dissemination protocols regarding Agency Pass-Through MBS and SBA-Backed ABS traded in Specified Pool Transactions. The comment period expires November 19, 2020. See the Federal Register notice.

The SEC requests comment on FINRA’s proposal to amend FINRA Rules 5122 (Private Placements of Securities Issued by Members) and 5123 (Private Placements of Securities) that would require members to file retail communications concerning private placement offerings that are subject to those rules’ filing requirements. The comment period expires November 27, 2020. See the Federal Register notice.

The SEC requests comment on FINRA’s proposal to amend the By-Laws of FINRA Regulation, Inc., FINRA’s regulatory subsidiary, to align the grounds for member removal from the National Adjudicatory Council with an existing provision in the FINRA By-Laws related to the removal of a FINRA Governor from the FINRA Board of Governors. The comment period expires November 30, 2020. See the Federal Register notice.

FINRA Elections

FINRA has issued two Election Notices to notify firms of elections to fill vacancies on various FINRA Committees. Election Notice 10/20/20 notifies firms of elections for FINRA Regional Committees, and the mailing of ballots to eligible firms. As detailed in the Notice, the District 2 seats on the West Region Committee are the only contested seats. The second Election Notice 10/20/20 notifies FINRA small firm members of the process to fill one South and one Midwest Region vacancy on the Small Firm Advisory Committee (SFAC). Ballots are due by Thursday, November 19, 2020. 

Broker-Dealer, Investment Adviser Firm, Agent and Investment Adviser Representative, and Branch Renewals for 2021

The 2021 Renewal Program begins November 16, 2020, when FINRA will make the Preliminary Statements available to all firms in E-Bill. As described in Regulatory Notice 20-39, the payment deadline is December 14, 2020.


 Education and Compliance Programs

Registration is open for the 2021 FINRA Institute at Georgetown Certified Regulatory and Compliance Professional (CRCP)® Program. Week I takes place on July 18-23, 2021, and Week II takes place on November 14-19, 2021.Take advantage of our new reduced registration rates and gain your CRCP designation.

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Regulatory Contacts
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