International Financial Law Prof Blog

Editor: William Byrnes
Texas A&M University
School of Law

Monday, January 26, 2015

FINRA Regulatory Priorities 2015 - Best Interest of Client Over Suitability Standard

FINRA has released its 2015 regulatory priorities.  A high priority is under the title "Putting customer interests first".

FINRAFINRA states that a central failing FINRA has observed is firms not putting customers’ interests first. The harm caused by this may be compounded when it involves vulnerable investors (e.g., senior investors) or a major liquidity or wealth event in an investor’s life (e.g., an inheritance or Individual Retirement Account rollover).

Poor advice and investments in these situations can have especially devastating and lasting consequences for the investor. Irrespective of whether a firm must meet a suitability or fiduciary standard, FINRA believes that firms best serve their customers—and reduce their regulatory risk—by putting customers’ interests first. This requires the firm to align its interests with those of its Fidcustomers.

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