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On The Front Lines of Protecting Investors

FINRA’s priorities are clear: getting bad brokers out of the industry, returning money to harmed investors, and preventing and deterring future misconduct. We stand ready on the front lines of investor protection to act quickly, root out potential fraud, and aggressively stop those who take advantage of vulnerable investors.
On The Front Lines of Protecting Investors

To carry out our mission, FINRA monitors and examines for member firm compliance with FINRA rules, MSRB rules, and federal securities laws and rules, and works to detect and address possible fraud or other misconduct. We investigate possible misconduct and bring disciplinary actions for violations of industry rules and regulations. We coordinate closely with the SEC and other federal and state regulators.

We register and administer qualification examinations to securities industry personnel who conduct business with the investing public, and require them to achieve and maintain certification as members of FINRA. We operate a fair and efficient dispute resolution forum for investors, brokerage firms and their registered employees.

We provide BrokerCheck®, a free online tool that allows the investing public to research the background and experience of financial brokers, advisers and firms.  We offer investors financial tools and resources through the FINRA Investor Education Foundation®.

Protecting investors—this is our core mission.

News Release
WASHINGTON – The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced today that it has barred former Goldman Sachs & Co. research analyst Brian Maguire for twice purchasing securities after he learned a fellow analyst was upgrading his recommendation in impending research reports and for lying to FINRA staff about his trading.
News Release
WASHINGTON, D.C.— While the economic fallout caused by COVID-19 has led to a significant rise in tips, complaints and referrals involving investment scams, new research from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation (FINRA Foundation) and the Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR) provides evidence that repeated exposure to concise, online educational interventions can reduce susceptibility to investment fraud among U.S. adults.
News Release
AARP, FINRA Investor Education Foundation and Heart+Mind Strategies identify key intervention opportunities WASHINGTON—AARP, the FINRA Investor Education Foundation (FINRA Foundation) and Heart+Mind Strategies today released Addressing the Challenge of Chronic Fraud Victimization, a study that identifies evidence-based ways to help repeat victims of financial fraud and their families.
News Release
Financial Resilience Toughest for Millennials, Singles, Women and Those With Lower Incomes, No College Degree and Facing Unemployment WASHINGTON, D.C.— Well before the COVID-19 pandemic, nearly four in 10 households lacked financial resilience, making them vulnerable to financial hardships, including those associated with the current pandemic or future financial crises, according to a report from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. Meanwhile, fewer than two in 10 households appeared to be financially resilient.
News Release
WASHINGTON, D.C.— In a year when a pandemic gripped the world, beginning and experienced retail investors flocked to the stock market using taxable, non-retirement investment accounts, according to new research by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation (FINRA Foundation) and NORC at the University of Chicago.
News Release
Firm Also Fined $350,000 for Failing to Reasonably Supervise Recommended Securities Transactions and Other Violations WASHINGTON—FINRA announced today that it sanctioned Worden Capital Management LLC (WCM) more than $1.5 million, including approximately $1.2 million in restitution to customers whose accounts were excessively traded by the firm’s representatives, and a $350,000 fine for supervisory and other violations.
News Release
$2.7 Million in Restitution to Customers; Two Matters Resolved Through Settlements and 17 Matters Resolved Through Cautionary Actions, Resulting in Remediation to Customers and Correction of Supervisory Deficiencies WASHINGTON—FINRA today announced initial results of its voluntary self-reporting 529 Plan Share Class Initiative (529 initiative), which include more than $2.7 million in restitution and interest to customers owning approximately 3,900 accounts, arising from settlements with two firms and 17 matters resolved through cautionary action letters.
News Release
Firm Ordered to Pay $4.4 Million in Restitution to Approximately 2,400 Affected Customers WASHINGTON—FINRA announced today that Transamerica Financial Advisors, Inc. (TFA) has agreed to pay approximately $4.4 million in restitution to approximately 2,400 customers for failing to supervise its registered representatives’ recommendations of three different products - variable annuities, mutual funds, and 529 plans. FINRA also fined TFA $4.4 million.
Podcast
For some investors a high-volume trading strategy could be something that they seek. For others it might be a sign of excessive trading. But when does a lot become too much? What does a firm's responsibility when it comes to supervising for this behavior? On this episode, FINRA Enforcement's Chris Kelly joins us to tell us more.
Blog Post
Laura is a single mother who earns less than $40,000 per year. In 2016, Laura, who had little investing experience, decided to invest in the stock market. She met with a broker and, at his suggestion, opened a brokerage account and deposited approximately $13,500—which constituted almost all of her savings. Less than a year later, Laura’s account had lost more than $9,000. Yet, Laura’s broker had made more than $11,000 in commissions. How did this happen? Laura was a victim of excessive trading by her broker.