FINRA Outlines Its Regulatory and Examination Priorities for 2018

FINRA recently published its 2018 Annual Regulatory and Examination Priorities Letter (Letter) identifying significant areas on which the regulator will focus in the coming year. Topics covered by the letter include ongoing issues such as fraud, customer asset protection, anti-money laundering and best execution, as well as new areas of focus such as technology governance and cryptocurrencies. The Letter, along with the Report on FINRA Examination Findings released in December 2017, serves as a resource to broker-dealers for enhancing their compliance, supervisory and risk-management programs, as well as preparing for FINRA examinations. In addition, the Letter provides valuable insight to fund managers affiliated with, or who employ the services of, FINRA-registered broker-dealers as to the priorities of the regulator. For more on FINRA and its regulatory agenda, see “Reading the Regulatory Tea Leaves: Recent White House and Congressional Action and Insights From SIFMA and FINRA Conferences” (Jul. 20, 2017); and “What the Record Number of 2016 SEC and FINRA Enforcement Actions Indicates About the Regulators’ Possible Enforcement Focus for 2017” (Dec. 15, 2016).

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