High-risk brokers a top priority for trend-setting regulator

Annual letter outlines 'a road map of issues' to be addressed this year by independent regulatory body.

High-risk brokers a top priority for trend-setting regulator

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority will focus its attention on high-risk brokers, conflicts of interest and cyber security amongst other priorities this year,  the regulatory body announced Thursday. 

FINRA, the largest independent regulator for all securities firms doing business in the U.S., released a letter outlining its 2014 Regulatory and Examination Priorities highlighting significant risks and issues that could adversely affect investors and market integrity this year.

"FINRA's examination priorities for 2014 provide the industry with a road map of issues that may be of risk to the investing public," said Richard G. Ketchum, FINRA's Chairman and CEO, in a news release. "By providing clear and detailed guidance to firms, we hope to not only support firms' compliance efforts but also to alert firms to the issues we have identified as the most salient risks to investors and the integrity of our markets."

FINRA addresses topics related to business conduct, fraud, financial and operational concerns, and market regulation priorities in the letter. It will update its view on risks throughout the year, adjusting its regulatory programs and allocation of resources to address changes the perceived risks.

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