The Investment Adviser Public Disclosure (“IAPD”) website was created by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) to provide investors with information about their investment adviser and investment adviser representative. The IAPD was created as a result of a 1996 amendment to the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. The website provides information on both SEC and state registered investment advisers, certain investment adviser firms that are exempt from registration with the SEC or states, and state-registered investment adviser representatives.
Investment advisers are required to maintain current and accurate disclosures on their Form ADV documents and Form U4 – Uniform Application for Securities Industry Registration or Transfers Forms. The Form U4 and Form ADV each have sections that require disclosure of the same or similar information regarding the investment adviser and its investment adviser representatives. Examples of disclosure information that is required by both the Form U4 and Form ADV include educational and business background, outside business activities, and regulatory disclosures. If the information provided is inconsistent between the Form U4 and the Form ADV it can be an immediate red flag to regulators that an investment adviser is not maintaining current and accurate information as required. Not providing required disclosure information or failing to update the required information for the Form U4 or the Form ADV can result in regulatory violations and penalties. In order to avoid such regulatory violations and penalties, investment advisers and their investment adviser representatives must maintain the Form U4 and Form ADV documents to ensure that the information provided is current, accurate, and consistent at all times.
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently issued an order instituting cease-and-desist proceedings against an investment adviser representative for misstating performance numbers on performance reports distributed to clients. According to the SEC’s order, the representative overstated client performance numbers and understated losses on individual portfolio performance reports provide to his clients. The investment adviser representative is now barred from associating with another investment adviser firm and required to pay a civil penalty of $60,000.