All posts by Clifford E. Kirsch

With more than 25 years of experience, Cliff regularly counsels clients on the design and distribution of investment products including wrap-fee programs and other advisory products, mutual funds, bank collective investment funds and insurance products. He also focuses on issues related to the design and implementation of compliance programs at financial services firms.

SEC OCIE Alert on Adviser Exams: 5 Most Frequent Deficiencies

The SEC’s OCIE office released its 5 most frequent deficiencies identified in examinations of Investment Advisers. They include the Compliance Rule, Regulatory Filings, Custody Rule, Code of Ethics Rule, and Books and Records.  According to the SEC staff, the Alert is based upon deficiencies cited from over 1,000 investment adviser exams over the past two years.  The document is helpful to the adviser legal and compliance personnel, not necessarily because there are surprises in the deficiencies cited, but because there is good amount of detail as to each of the cited deficiencies and thereby serves as a roadmap to be incorporated into the adviser’s annual compliance review.   View the Alert here: The Five Most Frequent Compliance T opics

OCIE Exam Reviews to Include Whistleblower Rule Compliance

Last week, the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (“OCIE”) issued a risk alert dealing with the whistleblower provisions arising out of the Dodd-Frank Act. While examining registered investment advisers and registered broker-dealers, the Staff is reviewing, among other things, compliance manuals, codes of ethics, employment agreements, and severance agreements to determine whether provisions in those documents pertaining to confidentiality of information and reporting of possible securities law violations may raise concerns under Rule 21F-17 under the Dodd-Frank Act. This review is included in examinations as staff deem appropriate. This exam focus follows several recent SEC enforcement actions charging violations of Rule 21F-17 of the Commission’s whistleblower regulations.

Read more here: National Exam Program Risk Alert: OCIE Examining Whistleblower Rule Compliance