The financial services industry is rapidly changing. Each week our consultants share their thoughts on regulatory news and industry hot topics. Our insights are gained through our experiences as successful industry practitioners and from working with hundreds of clients. Whether you are an executive trying to stay ahead of the curve or are new to the industry and want to learn more, this is the podcast for you.

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Digital technology use has accelerated in the last 12 months in many areas, from education to exercise to the financial services industry. So what is digital transformation, and what does it mean for the financial services industry? Who will benefit and how?  Join our panelists Dave Altschul, Jeff Wilk, Jim Roth and Pete McAteer as they discuss these topics and more. 

Regulatory settlement terms could require that the firm obtain the services of an independent third party to review and make recommendations for the firm to adopt and implement. While sometimes viewed with some animosity as an extension of the regulator, third party reviews can  in fact work to your advantage during the settlement and pre-settlement process.  Listen to this episode as Oyster Consulting’s 
Patrick M. Dennis and Evan Rosser discuss the upside of third party review requirements.
Don’t be a findings in next year’s FINRA Exam Priorities report.
Join our FINOP and Finance experts Rob HallClark Tucker and Jeff Harpel as they discuss  the repeated and new findings and recommendations in FINRA’s 2021 Examination and Risk Monitoring Program. 
Cyber criminals have been active and the costs of compliance or, worse, a security breach, continue to rise.
Join our experts Tim BucklerEd Wegener and Buddy Doyle as they discuss ways your firm can mitigate cyber threats arising from
your vendors and when you are changing technology platforms.  
Cyber criminals have been active and the costs of compliance and of a breech continue to rise. Join our experts Tim BucklerEd Wegener and Buddy Doyle as they discuss ways your firm can mitigate internal and external cyber threats.  
Introducing brokers must look down the road when considering economics and profitability, whether it is looking at a neglected clearing firm contract, or considering consolidation, succession and other alternatives to fulfill future needs.  Join our panelists David WilliamsJay DonlinDave Osborne and Jim Roth as they talk about what they are seeing in these areas, how firms are handling the current environment and how they are looking toward the future.
Competition, regulations, technology and reduced margins may be reducing your broker-dealer’s bottom line. How do you continue to thrive in this environment?  The answer may be right in front of you – your clearing firm. Join our panelists David Williams, Jay Donlin, Dave Osborne and Jim Roth as they talk about how maximizing your clearing firm’s capabilities can help your bottom line. 
Join Oyster CEO Buddy Doyle and consultants Ed Wegener,  Evan Rosser (former FINRA regulators) and Jeffrey Hiller (former SEC regulator) as they discuss the importance of viewing the FINRA’s 2021 Exam Priorities and your compliance program through a risk-based lens.  
This year, FINRA’s higher expectations of Reg BI compliance are worth checking into, so you have a successful compliance program and exam.  Join Oyster CEO Buddy Doyle and consultants Ed Wegener,  Evan Rosser (former FINRA regulators) and Jeffrey Hiller (former SEC regulator) as they discuss how making the most of the new 2021 Exam Priorities information on Reg BI can ensure your compliance program will meet regulator expectations.
For years FINRA has shared its priorities for the coming year, and 2021 was no exception. However, this year’s new format and FINRA’s higher expectations are worth checking into so you can have a successful exam. Join Oyster CEO Buddy Doyle and consultants Ed Wegener, Evan Rosser (former FINRA regulators) and Jeffrey Hiller (former SEC regulator) as they discuss how the new format can help you ensure your compliance program will meet regulator expectations. This podcast is the first of many we will be producing to help you utilize and understand this year’s priorities.

January 14, 2021 – Join Oyster Consulting’s Buddy DoyleJeffrey HillerEvan Rosser and Ed Wegener as they provide insight on the current regulatory expectations and requirements around remote inspections, as well as things you should consider when preparing for an exam.  Oyster’s consultants have been conducting remote testing for clients for years.  Jeffrey, Evan and Ed are all former regulators, and have been on both sides of the issue when it comes to remote inspections.  
New Podcast Mini-Series! November 11, 2020 – Join Oyster Consulting’s former regulators Patrick M. Dennis, Jeffrey HillerBill ReillyEvan Rosser and Ed Wegener in our new podcast mini-series, Regulators- Behind the Scenes.  In each episode, they share their experiences and perspectives as former regulators with the SEC, FINRA and the State of Florida, as well as experiences working as CCOs and consulting for clients on regulatory exams and issues.  Some things you just won’t learn from a textbook, such as managing your relationship with regulators, handling violations and document production during an exam, and escalation during an exam, to name a few.

November 4, 2020 – On October 26, 2020 the SEC hosted a Reg BI/Form CRS roundtable. Oyster CEO Buddy Doyle and Consultant Evan Rosser took this opportunity to add their input about where regulators are when enforcing Reg BI, and what we are hearing from our clients.  Reg BI is an ongoing compliance requirement, and now is the time for firms to take a look at the feedback from the regulator s, their customers and their sales force.  Listen to learn what regulators are looking at, what other firms are doing and what your firm should be doing to comply with Reg BI.
 

October 14, 2020 – In this episode of CCO – Behind the Scenes, Jeffrey Hiller discusses what makes a good CCO, the importance of being a “straight shooter,” and giving bad news. Listen as Jeffrey shares his real experiences and lessons learned during his vast experience as both a CCO for several global investment firms and Senior Counsel for the SEC’s Division of Enforcement. Being CCO is more than just checking boxes. 
  

October 12, 2020 – Oyster Consulting often works with clients after they’ve been examined by the regulators, and the Market Access Rule (Rule 15c3-5) is no different. It’s in your firm’s best interest to take a proactive look at your Market Access program and get it in good order, before the regulators do. In Part 2 of 2 podcasts covering the Market Access Rule, Oyster Consultants Joe Sisti and Evan Rosser discuss some of the finer points of a solid Market Access program, including post-trade surveillance, annual certifications and periodic testing.  

October 7, 2020 – In this episode of CCO – Behind the Scenes, Jeffrey Hiller talks about what “Tone at the Top” means, and why it’s important to embed the Compliance Department within the firm.   Listen as, during these short discussions, Jeffrey shares his real experiences and lessons learned during his vast experience as both a CCO for several global investment firms and Senior Counsel for the SEC’s Division of Enforcement. Being CCO is more than just checking boxes.
 

October 1, 2020 – The Market Access Rule (Rule 15c3-5) remains on FINRA’s priority list – they provided guidance on the rule and initiated enforcement actions against firms struggling to adhere to it. Oyster Consulting often works with clients after they’ve been called to the carpet by the regulators. It’s in your firm’s best interest to take a proactive look at your Market Access program and get it in good order, before the regulators do. In the first of 2 podcasts covering the Market Access Rule (Rule 15c3-5), Oyster Consultants Joe Sisti and Evan Rosser discuss who’s affected, regulatory focus and what firms should be doing to comply. 

September 30, 2020 – Being CCO is more than just checking boxes. Listen and learn in these short discussions as Oyster’s Jeffrey Hiller shares his real experiences and lessons learned in his podcast mini-series, CCO – Behind the Scenes. In this week’s episode Jeffrey discusses personal compliance violations and what you should do. Some things you just won’t get from a textbook. Prior to working at Oyster Consulting, Jeffrey served as both a CCO for several global investment firms and Senior Counsel for the SEC’s Division of Enforcement.

September 23, 2020 – In Episode 2 of CCO – Behind the Scenes, Jeffrey Hiller shares is lessons learned from decades in the industry as CCO for multiple global investment firms and as Senior Counsel for the SEC’s Division of Enforcement. This week’s topics include repeat violations and when and how to escalate issues successfully.

September 16, 2020 – Listen to Oyster Consulting’s Jeffrey Hiller in his
new podcast mini-series, CCO – Behind the Scenes (Episode 1). Jeffrey shares his vast experience as both a CCO for several global investment firms and Senior Counsel for the SEC’s Division of Enforcement. He literally helped write the book on modern regulatory compliance. Being CCO is more than just checking boxes. There are office politics to navigate, nuances to dealing with regulators and board members, and of course, ethical issues. Listen and learn in these short discussions as Jeffrey shares his real experiences and lessons learned from his decades in the industry. Some things you just won’t get from a textbook, such as cultivating the “tone at the top,” document production during an exam, escalation, dealing successfully with Boards, and repeat violations, to name a few.

August 19, 2020 – Oyster industry leaders Buddy Doyle, Bill Davis, Jeffrey Hiller, Jim Roth and Ed Wegener discuss what firm executives and decision makers should be focusing on in today’s volatile and changing business environment.  Topics include: improving your bottom line, updating and improving your planning services to meet client needs, risk levels and employment challenges, managing your cybersecurity and third party vendors in a pandemic world, vendor support , controls, testing and disclosures   

August 5, 2020 – Oyster Managing Director Ed Wegener, a former SVP and Midwest Regional Director of FINRA, shares his views on the changes in the regulator’s examination program, the kind of the people that are doing examinations and what firms should expect when an examiner walks in now.

July 29, 2020 – For financial services firms regulatory exams have instilled a range emotions from annoyance to anxiety to outright fear. Much of this could be mitigated with a better understanding of the exam process, the necessity for robust risk assessments, and by nurturing the firm’s relationship with it’s regulatory contact.  Oyster Managing Director Ed Wegener, formerly a SVP and Midwest Regional Director of FINRA discusses risk assessments and how FINRA is using those assessments to help determine the scope, depth, breadth and frequency of their examinations of broker-dealers. 

June 16, 2020 – As advisors build out their financial planning business, they gather a lot of data, and over the years the strategy of the firm can change. That may mean it’s a good time to change from a software application that’s more cash flow to one that’s more goal-oriented, or vice versa.  As a follow-up to last week’s high-level overview of the software selection process, Bill Davis offers the best approaches for advisors to take when selecting and implementing retirement plan software.

June 11, 2020 – Firms are always looking for ways to improve their bottom line, and updating or upgrading their software is one of them. But where to begin? How do you know if it will work for your firm? What will the implementation look like? What about hidden costs?  In this week’s episode Managing Director Polly Cordle, offers some tips and tricks on what to look for when you are considering new software. 

May 28, 2020 – Oyster Associate Director MJ Phillips discusses a variety of operational issues that can be uncovered during a merger, acquisition or transformation, and how outsourcing an operations specialist to preform an operational assessment can help resolve the issues to make firms more efficient and enhance their client service. 

May 20, 2020 – Oyster CEO Buddy Doyle, General Counsel Patrick M. Dennis and Managing Directors Polly Cordle and Jeffrey Hiller discuss remote supervision, and what that means in the current pandemic workplace, as well as some general best practices firms should consider. Topics include email reviewtrade surveillance, central supervision processes, training and roll-out, and remote supervision tactics.

May 13, 2020 – When markets are volatile, history has shown us that there is often an increase in securities litigation,  In this episode, Oyster’s General Counsel Patrick M. Dennis and Director Evan Rosser talk about past litigation trends in volatile markets and what they see coming as the pandemic continues to wreak havoc on the national economy and individual investments.

May 6, 2020 – As firms begin to adjust to the “new normal,” which for many means staff and clients working remotely for an indefinite amount of time, it’s important to not lose sight of all the moving parts. Compliance is one of those, and now is a good time to look at your program and test it against how your firm is functioning in this new environment. Do your policies and procedures match up with how you are doing things now? Oyster CEO Buddy Doyle, Managing Director Polly Cordle and Relationship Managers Molly Bryson and Gena Spitzer address several things firms should be reviewing, including email surveillancemarketing and advertising, policies and procedures, your compliance calendar and how you will test these things remotely. 

April 29, 2020 – The Consolidated Audit trail (CAT) is moving forward and the SEC has released new exemptive relief dates for parts 2a (Equity reporting) and 2b (Options reporting).  The SEC has also provided exemptive relief for introducing brokers. In this episode, Oyster Consultants Ralph Magee and Jeff Call discuss what firms should be doing around certifications, linkages, testing validation and the upcoming options reporting deadlines.  Oyster also has a new software application to validate firms’ CAT reporting. Learn more about that in this episode, or by clicking here