The Blog Of The Securities Industry Professional Association

Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmm??

Rants and raves from the SIPA

C & C music factory had a whole generation of people uttering these now famous words back in the 1990’s. As we review some of the changes that are occurring right before our eyes with the financial system, its apparent that there is more confusion then ever before instead of the transparency that was promised. The shake up in regulation has left us wondering if anyone really knows what’s actually happening or is Congress just making it up as they go along? Here are ten questions that the people at The SIPA would like answers to:

Who will be the ultimate Regulator of the Financial Industry, the Fed or the SEC?

Why are there mass resignations of high level FINRA employees being announced each week?

Who would have bet that Gunn Allen would last longer with FINRA than Bob Errico?..ok maybe only by a couple days but..

Speaking of Gunn Allen, why is it that they were shut down for having potential contingent liability of about 45 million but Merrill Lynch and Citi were(are?) still Trillions under water but their Net Cap is just fine ? Maybe they have better accountants.

Why do FINRA and the SEC feel the need to do a press release ‘EXPELLING” a firm that is already out of business? Do judges sentence people to serve jail time even though they are dead?

Why is there a “5% commission FINRA Guideline” instead of a rule? Even on the Series 7 test they state it’s NOT a rule but a GUIDELINE…but if you charge 6% commission you broke the rules in FINRA’s eyes?

Why does E*TRADE run commercials mocking the brokerage industry and investment advice? They are a penny stock trading around $1.70…maybe they should get a broker to advise them instead of babies?

Are massive pay cuts to the multi millionaires now working at FINRA an effort to budget properly or is it in response to the ‘Executive Pay” scandal?

Why is FINRA doing an 8 part series on its web site called “Learning to Invest”…when they revealed they lost half a billion investing in 2008? It might be wiser to let the babies from the E*trade commercial teach Americans how to invest.

Should members of the SIPA contest and run for the open seats on the FINRA Board of Governors?

Ahhhhhh So many questions and so few answers. One thing is certain though and that is big changes are in the wind and you better be ready to adapt and change to whatever comes down from Congress and the Regulators. We truly believe that regulation as we know it has changed forever. The question is how it will affect you and your business. While still unclear as to what the final direction will be, one thing is clear and that is that FINRA as a self regulator is going through major changes and turnover. Now more then ever it’s important to have your voice heard on the most powerful non governmental agency in the world. We believe that now is the time to have your voice heard and we will be active in any and all upcoming elections for seats on the FINRA Board of Governors because its obvious that the 10 questions asked above are not being asked at board meetings. If you would like more information about possibly having a voice in the industry we urge you to contact us immediately to see how your voice can be used to influence the shape of regulatory reform.

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April 7th, 2010


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