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Review of key issues for the regulators 

Review of key issues for the regulators 

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Full video transcript available below:

Looking at industry segments and sectors, we've heard from the regulators at the conferences we've mentioned and elsewhere on private banking and private wealth, a very large part of the industry with which we're lucky to work in detail.

Key issues that the regulators are focusing on, again, we see this focus on senior investors and on investors who may, for various reasons have diminished capacity and on ensuring that the industry is properly protecting investors of that sort. You can't talk about private wealth without talking about the DOL Rule, and the Fiduciary Rule. Many of you are working, laboring under that right now, it impacts the entire industry, wealth, retail and institutional, but certainly a heavy laser beam on the institutional. Again, a lot of uncertainty around the future of the imposition of fiduciary duties, uniform retail standard of care across the industry, because we do have congress acting, or purporting to act on the subject. We have the SEC still yet to act on the subject and we have a partially, but not fully implemented DOL Rule.

 

We see a lot of entities coming in to regulate private banking and private wealth and that is causing issues and concerns around the industry. The CFPB has become a very active regulator, the OCC, of course active regulator in this area, the state's an active regulators in this area and we are looking actively in the larger regulators in the area, the SEC and FINRA, looking to create, or take the lead, or create harmonized regulation wherever possible. Then finally, looking at the impact of advice and regulation on advice that is given without the intermediation of a human being, so called robo-advisors.

 

In that respect there's been a huge move towards putting robo-advisor solutions in place at various firms and an acknowledgement by the regulators that at least at the beginning the basic regulatory position is that it doesn't matter, but that the advice comes from a human or a machine that the regulations are going to seek to be applied more or less evenly, but with that said, active consideration of the growth of non-human advisors and algorithmic advice and how to ensure investor protection in that scenario. Joe, could you move forward one, two, three, four slides? One more?

 

Great. We're just going to take a moment now to address diversity, inclusion as addressed at the SIFMA seminar as well as the FINRA Diversity Summit of 2017. At the general counsel round table at the SIFMA seminar, the emphasis really was on becoming a diversity leader. The importance of diversity inclusion in the client, regulatory and judiciary spaces, effective and inclusive leadership and equal pay initiative. Those were kind of the high level topics that they addressed. Had the opportunity of attending the FINRA Diversity Summit that was held here in New York. It was very collaborative where basically market participants, law firms, different people from different groups exchanged ideas and best practices related to diversity and inclusion issues.

 

Also, we reviewed recent research on the relationship between candidate pools and hiring positions. We discussed the progress of diversity in the financial services sector and the concept of unconscious bias. It was very collaborative and an interesting ... those were some of the topics that we addressed at that summit as well.

 

Interestingly, the SEC has a diversity officer now, FINRA is very, very eager and interested in looking at promoting diversity inclusion in the industry. Regulators are now regularly talking about diversity and inclusion as part of being a culture of compliance in the legal and compliance sense. Something we hear regularly more than just in passing from both FINRA and the SEC.

 

 

This webinar was co-hosted with Shearman and Sterling LLP

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