Skip to main content

Guidance

We offer guidance to firms in the form of podcasts, webinars, FAQs, reports, and more. Use the toggle below to find guidance by topic, type or date. 

A B C D E F G I L M N O P Q R S T V
Guidance
In the near-future, FINRA is introducing a new TRACE Markup/Markdown Analysis Report on the Report Center. The report displays a firm's markup and markdown behavior compared to the industry and provides the underlying details used to calculate the markup or markdown.
May 23, 2018
Get Involved
The FINRA Board of Governors meets this week for the first time in 2018. Read President and CEO Robert Cook’s email to firms previewing the agenda.
May 07, 2018
Interpretive Letter
A member firm may include related performance information in institutional communications concerning variable contracts, subject to the stated conditions discussed in the letter.
April 16, 2018
Guidance
The staff granted an exemption from FINRA Rule 5130 with respect to purchases of “new issues” by the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.
April 16, 2018
Compliance Tools

Large Options Positions Report (LOPR) – Listed
FINRA is providing Listed LOPR exceptions from FINRA’s Listed LOPR Audit Exception Report. The LOPR Listed report contains three types of exceptions for exchange-traded options: The Effective Date, LOPR Reporting Exceptions and In-Concert Exceptions.

April 11, 2018
Targeted Examination Letter
FINRA’s Member Regulation department is conducting a review with respect to products linked to the CBOE’s Volatility Index (VIX). The review will focus on the supervisory processes followed by firms to identify and mitigate sales practice risks associated with recommendations to non-institutional purchasers of VIX-linked products.
April 09, 2018
Guidance

On May 14, 2018, amendments to FINRA Rule 2232 will take effect, which require a member firm to disclose on the customer confirmation the amount of mark-up or mark-down it applies for certain trades with retail customers in corporate or agency debt securities. Disclosed mark-ups must be calculated consistent with existing Rule 2121.

April 03, 2018
Investor Education
About 70 percent of Americans expect to receive a tax refund this year. If you are one of them, FINRA’s senior vice president of Investor Education Gerri Walsh has some tips on how you can put that cash to work for you.
March 13, 2018
Podcast
From banking and investing to social media and shopping, the internet is an essential part of our daily lives. That means cybersecurity is more important than ever. That is particularly true for FINRA, which can process up to 99 billion records in a single day. Here, John Brady explains how FINRA stays cyber secure.
February 27, 2018
Video
Cybersecurity experts and regulators gathered in New York City on February 22, 2018 to focus on key ways the financial services industry can maintain cybersecurity.
February 26, 2018
Guidance

Original Program Date: Thursday, December 14, 2017
4:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. ET

FINRA hosted a phone-in workshop and WebEx presentation in December 2017 to introduce the Cross Market Equities Supervision: Potential ATS Cross Manipulation and Cross Market Equities Supervision: Potential Auto Execution Manipulation Report Cards. These two Report Cards became available on the FINRA Report Center in early January.

February 05, 2018
Guidance

Firms and associated persons are required to provide complete, up-to-date and accurate information on registration forms (e.g., Form BD, Form U4, Form U5 and other forms) (“Filings”). Some of the information required to complete these Filings is personal information. Please review the guidance provided on this page on how to protect this information.

January 11, 2018
FAQ
In February 2017, the SEC approved: (1) the adoption of new FINRA Rule 2165 (Financial Exploitation of Specified Adults) to permit members to place temporary holds on disbursements of funds or securities from the accounts of specified customers where there is a reasonable belief of financial exploitation of these customers; and (2) amendments to FINRA Rule 4512 (Customer Account Information) to require members to make reasonable efforts to obtain the name of and contact information for a trusted contact person (“trusted contact”) for a customer’s account. New Rule 2165 and the amendments to Rule 4512 become effective February 5, 2018.
January 03, 2018
Podcast
Can financial mistakes lead to a life of helping others? What should you do before you invest? How can you avoid being scammed? Hear the answers when Gerri Walsh, President of the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, talks with FINRA’s Kenneth Edward Piner about her own financial journey.
December 21, 2017
Guidance

Representations under Rules 5130 and 5131 may be obtained electronically through a mobile application, provided that the method for obtaining representations complies with SEC and FINRA guidance regarding the use of electronic communications, and the representations satisfy the requirements set forth in Rules 5130 and 5131.


December 11, 2017

Lawrence Cohen
Of Counsel
Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani, LLP
111 W. Monroe Street, Suite 1600
Phoenix, AZ 85003

December 11, 2017
FAQ

1. What’s new?

Beginning with the 2018 program, FINRA is partnering with Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business to deliver the FINRA Institute at Georgetown Certified Regulatory and Compliance Professional (CRCP)® program.

2. Why is FINRA making this change?

December 06, 2017
Report / Study

Introduction

FINRA’s examination program plays a central role in supporting FINRA’s mission of investor protection and market integrity. A main component of this program is FINRA’s examinations of broker-dealers (“firms” or “members”) that are conducted on a regular cycle basis: each firm is examined at least once every four years, and many are examined even more frequently. In connection with each of these examinations, FINRA prepares a report—which is available only to the relevant firm—addressing certain aspects of the firm’s compliance with securities rules and regulations.

December 06, 2017
Report / Study

FINRA Rule 2111 states that a “member or an associated person must have a reasonable basis to believe that a recommended transaction or investment strategy involving a security or securities is suitable for the customer, based on the information obtained through the reasonable diligence of the member or associated person to ascertain the customer’s investment profile.” In addition, FINRA Rule 3110 obligates firms to establish and maintain a system to

December 01, 2017
Report / Study
As trading in the U.S. securities markets has become more automated, the potential impact of a trading error or a rapid series of errors—caused by a computer or human error, or a malicious act—has become more severe.
December 01, 2017
Guidance

Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Congress passed the USA PATRIOT Act, in part, to strengthen the anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing provisions of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and extend them to broker-dealers. Among other provisions, the BSA requires firms to monitor for, detect and report suspicious activity to the U.S. Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).

December 01, 2017
Technical Documentation
FINRA observed some firms that engaged in institutional sales of fixed income securities frequently did not comply with certain key TRACE reporting rules—FINRA Rules 6730(a)(7),23 6730(b)(1) and (2),24 and 6730(c)(8)
December 01, 2017
Guidance
FINRA Provides Guidance to Firms Regarding Anti- Money Laundering Program Requirements Under FINRA Rule 3310 Following Adoption of FinCEN’s Final Rule to Enhance Customer Due Diligence Requirements for Financial Institutions
November 21, 2017
Targeted Examination Letter

November 2017

The Trading & Financial Compliance Examinations (TFCE) section of the Market Regulation Department (Market Regulation) at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) is conducting a review of [FIRM] concerning the impact the receipt of order routing inducements, such as payment for order flow and maker-taker rebates, has on the Firm’s [equities and options] order routing practices and decisions. As part of this review, TFCE requests that the Firm provide complete and detailed responses to the following:

November 10, 2017
Podcast
It may not be possible to predict when the next natural disaster will take place. What you can count on is that when it happens, scammers will try to take advantage of the situation. These tips will help you spot and avoid investment scams.
September 20, 2017
FAQ
View frequently asked questions and guidance about covered agency transactions under FINRA rule 4210 and frequently asked questions regarding SEA Rule 15c3-1 and Rule 15c3-3.
September 18, 2017