The Office of the Investor Advocate of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently released a report about the SEC staff’s study of mandatory arbitration clauses in investment advisory client agreements used by investment adviser firms registered with the SEC.
October 26, 2023
Just as a skilled surfer anticipates the perfect wave, an investment adviser firm’s seasoned executives and compliance professionals must prepare for the impending regulatory swell.
SEC Taking a Closer Look at Whether Investment Advisers Are Obtaining “Informed Consent” When Amending Advisory Agreements
October 17, 2023
New Exam Priority
The Division of Examinations of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently issued the Fiscal Year 2024 Examination Priorities signaling areas of particular interest for the upcoming audits of investment advisers. Notably, this year’s exam priorities introduces what appears to be a new focus on whether investment adviser firms are obtaining “informed consent” from clients when making material changes to advisory agreements:
During the last several years, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has intensified its scrutiny of liability hedge clauses within investment advisory client agreements used by investment adviser firms.
September 19, 2023
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently issued a final set of rule amendments under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, primarily aimed at enhancing the regulatory framework governing investment advisers to private funds. The new set of rules, as described in SEC Release No. IA-6383, is designed to protect investors who invest directly or indirectly in private funds. It focuses on increasing transparency in compensation arrangements and prohibiting conflicted arrangements involving private funds. Through an audited financial statement requirement, the new rules also aim to prevent fraudulent activities by registered investment advisers advising private funds. Finally, this set of new rules includes an amendment requiring all SEC-registered investment advisers to document in writing the annual review of their compliance policies and procedures.
September 18, 2023
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has initiated an administrative enforcement proceeding against an investment adviser firm registered with the SEC for allegedly failing to file the quarterly Form13F from February 2017 until April 2022.
September 09, 2023
In the ever-evolving landscape of securities regulation, it is crucial for investment adviser firms registered with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) to stay vigilant and informed about current enforcement actions. A recent cease-and-desist proceeding instituted by the SEC against a clean energy company has sent a clear message regarding whistleblower protections and the use of severance agreements. As a result, we’ll explore the implications of this enforcement action and how it relates to investment adviser firms in light of SEC Rule 21F-17.
September 07, 2023
The Division of Examinations of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently issued a Risk Alert dated September 6, 2023, that provides valuable insights into the examination process for investment advisers. This Risk Alert serves as a guide on how the SEC identifies investment advisers for examinations and the documents and information requested. Notably, it includes a separate attachment titled “Typical Initial Information Examiners Request of Investment Advisers” which is a helpful resource for investment advisers to understand what to expect during an SEC examination.
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently initiated an enforcement action against with an investment adviser firm for allegedly failing to conduct sufficient fee audits which resulted in overcharging more than 10,900 investment advisory accounts, amounting to over $26.8 million in advisory fees. Without admitting or denying the SEC charges, the investment adviser firm has agreed to pay a $35 million civil penalty to settle this proceeding.
SEC Brings Enforcement Action Against Investment Adviser For Paying Online Content Creators to Solicit Clients
August 27, 2023
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) recently announced an enforcement action against and settlement with an investment adviser firm related to solicitation arrangements with online content providers. The investment adviser firm allegedly paid over $8 million to more than 200 social media influencers and online newsletter providers for prospective client referrals without adhering to the required disclosure and documentation under the former Rule 206(4)-3 of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. The investment adviser firm has agreed to a cease-and-desist order, censure, and a $250,000 civil penalty to settle the charges by the SEC.