On October 1, the Securities and Exchange Commission proposed an amendment to Regulation NMS that would rescind a rule exception that allows a national market system plan (NMS Plan) amendment to be effective upon filing if it establishes or changes a fee or other charge (Proposal).
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On October 8, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced the availability of new resources to assist member forms to comply with the Securities Exchange Commission’s Regulation Best Interest (Reg BI) and Form CRS by the June 30, 2020 compliance deadline. Reg BI establishes a “best interest” standard of conduct for broker-dealers and associated persons when making recommendations to a retail customer in connection with a securities transaction or investment strategy involving securities. In addition to the Reg BI requirements, the SEC also adopted a new rule to require broker-dealers and investment advisers to provide retail investors with a brief relationship summary known as the Form CRS.

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The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has proposed to amend Rule 15c2-11, which governs the publication and submission of quotations by a broker-dealer in the over-the-counter (OTC) market. The proposed amendments would prohibit a broker-dealer from publishing quotes in a security not listed on a national securities exchange unless documents and information about the issuer are current and publicly available.


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The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has amended its Rule 2210 (Communications with the Public) and Rule 2241 (Research Analysts and Research Reports) to conform to the requirements of the Fair Access to Investment Research Act of 2017 (FAIR Act) and subsequent rules adopted by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). As background, the FAIR Act and related SEC rules establish a safe harbor under which unaffiliated broker-dealers may publish and distribute research reports on “covered investment funds” without the publication or distribution being deemed an offer of securities. For these purposes, the term “covered investment funds” generally includes registered investment companies, business development companies, and certain commodity- and currency-based trusts and funds.

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On September 19, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued Regulatory Notice 19-31 (Notice) addressing disclosure innovations in advertising and other communications with the public. The Notice responds specifically to questions that FINRA has received from member firms about how they can comply with FINRA rules when communicating with their customers. FINRA’s goal in issuing the Notice is to help facilitate simplified and more effective disclosures.
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On August 16, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued Regulatory Notice 19-28 (Notice) reminding member firms of their supervisory obligations under FINRA Rules 3110 (Supervision) and 3120 (Supervisory Control System) if they 1) hold or transact in customer accounts owned by municipal entities or obligated persons (i.e., municipal clients), as defined in Section 15B of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended; and 2) participate in investment-related activities with municipal clients (e.g., recommending or selling non-municipal securities products to such municipal clients).
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