SEC Director of the Division of Enforcement Stephanie Avakian highlighted efforts "to combat wrongdoing, compensate harmed investors, and maintain confidence in the integrity and fairness of our markets."
The Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations alerted firms to the increased prevalence of "credential stuffing," a cyberattack method that involves the use of automated scripts to attempt to log into customer accounts using stolen personal information.
In a study funded by FINRA's Investor Education Foundation, researchers found that financial overconfidence (i.e., high confidence in an individual's financial knowledge relative to their actual financial literacy) may result in excessive financial risk-taking.
FINRA proposed amendments to the Security Futures Risk Disclosure Statement to reflect recent changes on position limits for security futures contracts, market-wide circuit breaker benchmarks and thresholds, and that exchanges may now list security futures on certain debt instruments.
The Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations identified compliance issues for broker-dealers and investment advisers resulting from market volatility and operational disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The President's Working Group on Financial Markets made several recommendations to the SEC addressing the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board's lack of access to auditors of Chinese companies listed in the United States.
Two affiliated registered SEC firms, one of which was an adviser and the other, a dually registered adviser and introducing broker, settled SEC charges for making material misrepresentations to the advisers' clients.
An investment adviser settled SEC charges for failing to disclose that: (i) the adviser's parent company paid a teachers' union-owned for-profit entity to promote the adviser's services to teachers; and (ii) the adviser received financial benefits as a direct result of investment recommendations that were more expensive than other options available to clients.
The CFTC Division of Swap Dealer and Intermediary Oversight extended temporary no-action relief from July 23, 2020 to September 30, 2020 to principals and associated persons from rules requiring a fingerprint card when registering with the Commission.
A CFTC final rule aimed at preventing certain bad actors from seeking exemptions from registration as CPOs under CFTC Rule 4.13 ("Exemption from Registration as a Commodity Pool Operator") was published in the Federal Register.