SEC Publishes 2017 Annual Exam Priorities Letter


Last week, the SEC published its National Examination Priorities for 2017 letter. And while we are all waiting for more clues as to how the new administration will impact regulation, these priorities can be used today as a list of items to review internally. So take a look at your risk assessments, policies and procedures, supervisory systems, surveillance tools, testing calendars, and training plans so that you can be confident your firm is ready.

Under the first of the three themes emerging in the letter, Matters of Importance to Retail Investors, the letter suggests the following topics will be focused on for firms providing investment advice to retail investors:

  • Electronic Investment Advice
  • WRAP Fee Programs
  • Exchange Traded Funds
  • Never Before Examined Investment Advisers
  • Recidivist Reps and Firms that Employ Them
  • Multi-Branch Advisers
  • Share Class Selection

Focus on the second major theme, senior investors and retirement investors will continue to include:

  • The ReTIRE Initiative
  • Public Pension Advisers
  • Financial Exploitation of Seniors

The third theme, Market-wide Risks, will also be an area of focus, including:

  • Money Market Funds
  • Payment for Order Flow
  • Clearing Agencies
  • FINRA Oversight
  • Regulation Systems Compliance and Integrity (“SCI”)
  • Cybersecurity
  • National Exchanges
  • Anti-Money Laundering

In the “Other” category the SEC will focus on:

  • Municipal Advisors
  • Transfer Agents
  • Private Fund Advisors

If you have any questions or concerns about any of these topics, please contact us and we will follow-up promptly. Our consultants are experts in these areas and have the experience and perspective gained from working with hundreds of clients to help you efficiently and effectively run your firm. They have sat in your seat and faced the same obstacles and regulatory scrutiny. We can also provide you with compliance automation through our Oyster Solutions platform by integrating risk assessments, policies and procedures and testing programs that are aligned to how you do business.

For more information or to schedule a demo of Oyster Solutions, please complete our contact form or call Oyster Consulting at (804) 965-5400, and one of our associates will be happy to assist you.