Pennsylvania + Wall


Pennsylvania + Wall provides commentary on a broad range of current financial, economic and regulatory reform topics. The views expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of SIFMA.

March 04, 2014

Holes in the Volcker Rule

By Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr.

Ken Bentsen The following oped appeared in The Hill.

The final Volcker Rule has been out for just over two months, and it has already raised a host of questions and concerns as firms comb through almost a thousand pages to interpret the complex rule and comply by the July 2015 deadline.

One of the greatest challenges with interpreting and implementing the Volcker Rule is the lack of statutory direction for ensuring coordination among the five regulators. The Dodd-Frank Act tasked the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the Federal Reserve Board, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with writing the rule, but it did not task any one agency or the agencies collectively with the interpretation, examination, supervision or enforcement of the final regulation.  .... Read more...

January 07, 2014

SIFMA: Dealers Not Given Enough Time on MA Rule

By Michael Decker and Leslie Norwood

SIFMA: Dealers Not Given Enough Time on Muni Advisor RuleIn an interview with The Bond Buyer, Michael Decker and Leslie Norwood reiterated SIFMA's warning that dealers have not been given enough time to comply with the SEC's Municipal Advisor Rule which becomes effective on January 13.

WASHINGTON - The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association is very concerned about the imminent effective date of the new municipal advisor rule, warning both that federal regulators have not given banks enough time to comply and that the rule remains unclear absent additional guidance..... Read more...

November 06, 2013

Our Partnership With You

By Senator Judd Gregg

PartnershipHelping individual investors achieve their financial goals by providing the highest quality advice, products and service is a commitment we all have in the financial services industry. In a 2013 study, nearly 3 in 4 retail investors in the capital markets said they are optimistic about opportunities. More than half of investors said their investment managers are more effective in building trust in capital markets than regulators. Our industry understands the role it plays in helping Americans succeed and Main Street prosper. We take our role very seriously.

SIFMA today announced the launch of a new initiative that enhances our partnership with individual investors and helps them achieve their financial goals. "Our Partnership with You" provides individual investors with helpful information on how to get the most out of their relationship with their investment professional and participation in the capital markets. This is just one part of a series of initiatives that SIFMA will be rolling out to demonstrate our commitment to putting customers first..... Read more...

October 18, 2013

2013 Annual Meeting: Invitation from Mr. Kenneth E. Bentsen

By Ken Bentsen

Ken Bentsen This is the second of a special two part post from SIFMA's senior management. Read the first post, a letter from SIFMA's CEO, former Senator Judd Gregg.

Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr. was recently appointed as President of SIFMA, having previously served as Executive Vice President of Public Policy and Advocacy. Mr. Bentsen served as a Member of the United States House of Representatives from Texas from 1995 to 2003, where he sat on the Financial Services and Budget Committees. He has also served as President of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), Managing Director of Public Strategies, Inc., and an investment banker specializing in municipal and mortgage finance.

SIFMA announced new leadership in May; how are you working with Senator Gregg to achieve SIFMA's mission?

Senator Gregg is focused on rallying the public about the need for preserving efficient U.S. capital markets and cost-effective access to credit. My role continues to be placing SIFMA as a productive and substantive participant in the regulatory reform process. We provide regulators with information, studies and analysis to help them craft rules that work and create certainty. We have been in support of financial regulatory reform from the start, but the process is far from over. We will continue to be engaged on behalf of our members and the industry at large to strengthen our markets and restore faith and confidence in our financial system..... Read more...

October 18, 2013

2013 Annual Meeting: An Invitation from Senator Judd Gregg

By Senator Judd Gregg

Judd Gregg This is the first of a special two part post from SIFMA’s senior management. Stay tuned for a Q&A with SIFMA President Ken Bentsen, which will publish on Thursday. 

Former Senator Judd Gregg served as a United States Senator from 1993 to 2011 and was both Chairman and the Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee. Prior to his tenure in the Senate, Senator Gregg served as Governor of New Hampshire (1989-1993) and as a U.S. Representative (1981-1989). He recently joined SIFMA as CEO.

I hope you will join me for SIFMA's 2013 Annual Meeting.

Along with our commitment to addressing regulatory and legislative issues which seem to arise with considerable consistency, SIFMA, at the direction of and with the strong support of our Board of Directors, is embarking on a broad initiative to reconnect the importance of the capital markets with the everyday lives of Americans..... Read more...

September 23, 2013

Ending mandatory arbitration will hurt individual investors

By Kevin Carroll

Kevin CarollThe following oped appeared in Investment News.

The Investor Choice Act of 2013 is the latest in a series of attacks on securities arbitration at the state and federal level. Introduced last month, the bill would ban broker-dealers and investment advisers from specifying in their agreements with clients how future disputes between them should be resolved, whether by arbitration or in court..... Read more...

September 16, 2013

Investors First: A Fiduciary Standard for Brokers

By Ira Hammerman

DOL, Fiduciary, ERISA, RetirementInvestors’ best interests should be put first by their financial advisor. SIFMA has long supported a uniform fiduciary standard of conduct that would hold both broker-dealers and investment advisers to the same robust standard when providing personalized advice about securities to their individual retail clients. Recent commentary that suggests SIFMA supports anything less is simply not accurate. .... Read more...

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