February 2017

Private Client Today - Legislative and Regulatory Updates for the Private Client Industry

Spotlight Events

Kenneth E. Bentsen Op-Ed in The Hill: “DOL Pending Fiduciary Rule Remains Flawed, Negatively Impacting the Marketplace”
SIFMA President and CEO, Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr., penned an op-ed to The Hill setting the record straight about the industry’s position on the Department of Labor’s pending fiduciary rule.

“It is important to cut through the rhetoric and seek a policy solution that is in the best interest of the client.  We continue to support the establishment of a best interest standard that applies to all retail brokerage accounts.  We continue to believe the SEC is the right agency to undertake this task.  We believe the DOL rule has serious flaws, and those flaws are already resulting in negative consequences for the investors the rule seeks to help.  Just as our industry will continue to comply with the rules Congress and regulators establish, because they are the law, we will also continue to advocate for good policy that benefits our clients and marketplace.”
The Hill: “DOL Pending Fiduciary Rule Remains Flawed, Negatively Impacting the Marketplace”
The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas issued a Memorandum Opinion
DOL Fiduciary Resource Center

Trump Memorandum to Delay DOL Fiduciary Rule
On February 3, President Trump issued a memorandum directing the Department of Labor to delay the applicability date of the fiduciary rule. “The Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule is flawed and is causing harm to retirement savers. SIFMA’s members have long supported a best interest standard for brokers who provide personalized investment advice, but the DOL is not the right agency nor is the DOL rule the right approach,” said Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr, SIFMA president and CEO. “Delaying the applicability date to allow the new Administration an opportunity to review the rule’s impact on investors and the market is appropriate and not without precedent.”
View Press Statement
Bentsen Interview on Bloomberg News

SIFMA Commends Presidential Action to Review Financial Regulatory Framework
On February 3, Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr., SIFMA president and CEO, commended the Trump Administration for taking action to review the nation’s financial regulatory framework and its impact on the markets and the economy. "SIFMA has long called for a cumulative review of financial regulations including those put in place since 2008,” Mr. Bentsen said. “Our capital markets are the envy of the world and also among the most regulated sectors in the U.S. economy. It is imperative to ensure that our financial regulatory framework does not unnecessarily impede capital formation that drives job creation, economic growth and investor opportunity in this country."
Read the Full Press Release

SIFMA and the SIFMA Foundation Kick-Off the 14th Annual  Stock Market Game™-Capitol Hill Challenge
The 14th annual Stock Market Game™-Capitol Hill Challenge (CHC) has begun! This national 14-week financial education competition organizes teams of middle and high school students by congressional and senatorial district and teaches them about saving, investing, and government. The competition uses the SIFMA Foundation’s curriculum-based Stock Market Game™, a program to help students develop a better understanding of the global economy, become college and career ready, and improve their knowledge of math, economics, and business. Be sure to check back weekly to view the updates in the rankings from this year’s participating schools, and see all the latest news about this year’s event.
Press Release
2016 Highlights
About the Capitol Hill Challenge

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EVENTS

Last Chance to Register: SIFMA’s Social Media & Digital Marketing Seminar– February 23
Building on the expert insights presented at 12 installments of this unique seminar, our expanded event travels to the west coast to explore best practices in digital marketing and examine tactical applications, while adhering to an ever-changing compliance framework. Join leading experts in Business, Marketing, Legal, and Compliance professionals in Wealth Management to explore how to leverage the myriad of digital platforms, while ensuring a consistent brand voice and regulatory compliance.

View the Speakers: SIFMA Private Client Conference Scottsdale: April 5-6 2017
SIFMA’s Private Client Conference convenes leaders from across the private wealth management industry to examine the most topical issues facing the business. Join us in Scottsdale, AZ for a new program focusing on financial advice amidst rapidly changing technology, regulations, and demographics.

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SIFMA Research

SIFMA releases 2017 US Municipal Issuance Survey: Long-term issuance likely to taper
Although total municipal bond issuance is expected to increase this year, a drop in refundings is likely to contribute to a decrease in long-term muni issuance from $423.8 billion in 2016 to $417.5 billion in 2017, based on SIFMA’s survey released Wednesday. "Many bonds are issued with ten-year par calls so one of the driving factors for refunding volume is … the new money issuance volume ten years ago," says Michael Decker, managing director and co-head of munis. 
View SIFMA Survey
The Bond Buyer Article

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Regulatory

SEC Office of Inspections and Examinationsissues Risk Alert: The five most frequent compliance topics identified in deficiency letters sent to SEC-registered investment advisers Key takeaways: Advisers should review their compliance programs and practices in light of the topics noted in this Risk Alert.

Robert W. Cook, FINRA President & CEO remarks from the SIFMA Compliance & Legal Society.

Susan F. Axelrod, Executive Vice President, FINRA Regulatory Operations remarks from the SIFMA Anti-Money Laundering and Financial Crimes Conference.

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Legislative

Senators Collins, McCaskill Introduce Senior $afe Act of 2017
On January 24, Sen. Collins and McCaskill introduced the Senior $afe Act of 2017 (S.223 ). The bipartisan bill would put in place a plan to help protect American seniors from financial exploitation and fraud by providing support to regulators, financial institutions, and legal organizations to educate their employees about how to identify and prevent financial exploitation of older Americans. The bill was originally introduced in the 114th Congress and currently has 15 sponsors.


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