Thursday, 14 June 2007 08:00
On June 14, 2007 the SEC released its first ComplianceAlert, the first in what will be a series of letters describing issues and findings from recent compliance examinations. The letters are part of an effort to share information across the financial services industry and enable compliance officers at registered firms to stay current on SEC compliance issues.
The ComplianceAlert letters represent a proactive step toward an environment that encourages efficient self-regulation. SEC Chairman Christopher Cox noted that, “Investors are best protected when securities firms operate in full compliance with the law. Along with our CCOutreach Program, these ComplianceAlert letters are another step in our efforts to continue helping chief compliance officers foster robust compliance in the securities industry.”
Lori Richards, Director of the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations, said, “By sharing information about our examination findings, our goal is to alert firms to areas of compliance weakness so that they can take steps to proactively address any problems. Compliance staff at securities firms have often told us that they really value this kind of information, because they can use it as a roadmap to ensure that their firms have strong compliance and supervisory programs in these areas.”
Investment advisers and hedge fund managers who make use of this type information and adjust their compliance and supervisory procedures accordingly are likely to find themselves in good stead if and when SEC compliance officers begin asking questions. The first ComplianceAlert letter from the SEC staff can be found on the SEC website at: http://www.sec.gov/about/offices/ocie/complialert.htm.