SEC Disciplinary Actions
The Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) is empowered by Congress to oversee the securities industry, including Registered Investment Advisors (RIA) through rule-making, compliance and enforcement. RIAs must be registered with either the SEC or state securities regulators depending on the amount of Assets Under Management (AUM). Generally, any individual or entity that receives compensation for providing financial advice about investing in securities must register with either the SEC or the state securities regulators where they have their principal place of business.
The Dodd-Frank Act and SEC rules increased the threshold to $100 million in AUM above which all investment advisors must register with the SEC. Now, investment advisors with less than $100 million of AUM must register with the state securities regulator where their principal business is located. RIAs are subject to registration requirements which include disclosure of all pertinent information related to their investment advisor business through the SEC Form ADV Disclosure document.
Form ADV Part 1 contains Registered Investment Advisor information about place of business and whether the RIA or anyone in their employ has been the subject of customer complaints, regulatory fines and sanctions. Form ADV Part 2 is a plain English brochure written to disclose information such as the types of advisory services offered, the adviser’s fee schedule, disciplinary information, conflicts of interest, and the educational and business background of management and key advisory personnel of the RIA. The brochure is the primary disclosure document that investment advisor representatives (IAR) provide to their clients.
Current SEC Investment Adviser Public Disclosures can be found at the IAPD website. State securities regulator information can be found at the website of the North American Securities Administrators Association.
Should RIAs with a history of regulatory violations and disciplinary actions be a concern to investors? Securities industry rule violations by RIAs may be an indication of wrongdoings such as fraud, supervisory failure, failed investment strategies which may still exist. To learn more about your RIA and whether any disciplinary actions below are similar to the handling of your investment accounts, contact us to discuss your matter in detail.
Registered Investment Advisors – Public Disclosures
Source: Securities Exchange Commission – 2015
Full Disciplinary Reports Available to the public at www.sec.gov