Not only did the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest (Reg BI) take effect about two years ago, since then, its had tongues wagging, according to questce.com. The topic continued to flash plenty of energy at FINRA’s recent 2022 Annual Conference.
So, what insights have been gained since Reg Bi was implanted and, to this point, what’s clicked for firms? Have any conflicts been isolated?
A few pieces:
1.) FINRA will be Conducting Deeper Reg BI Exams
FINRA wasted no time acknowledging that, down the road, it will undertake deeper reviews of Reg Bi and Form CRS.
2.) Audits Unveiled Some Good (and Bad) Behaviors
3.) Product Decision Trees Should be Documented
4.) Training/Policies Needs to go Beyond Rule Definitions
Meantime, senators recently were informed by Gary Gensler, chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission, that additional resources are required by the agency, according to thinkadvisor.com. The exam division’s “work is essential to ensuring strong compliance across the board,” including “work to test for compliance with Regulation Best Interest,” he continued.
The enforcement division’s “doing more with less,” Gensler said in testimony before the Senate Banking Committee, the site continued.
The tip line was burning in fiscal 2021, with the agency handling 46,000 tips, complaints and public referrals, the chair added. Five years earlier, that number stood at about 16,000.
A little nip and tuck?
Well, let’s just say someone hit refresh on ESGs, culminating in the sustainable spend report, which provides an overview of the organization’s ESG performance, according to tealbook.com. How? Details…details, eh? Well, by dispensing detailed reports of spend with ESG certified supplies.
Emissions reduction, sustainable sourcing, energy management, and animal welfare are among ESG certifications.
Thanks to this feature, TealBook customers with Elite license, make out. That’s because – with no extra effort -- this features lifts spend data capabilities, the site continued. On top of that, customers can filter by time period, take a gander at spend based on ESG category through the report.
The site describes the sustainability spend report as “a powerful new tool that enables customers to make procurement decisions that align with their organization’s policies and business strategies.”
To help define your ESG strategy, goal setting is integral, according to getgoallab.com.
To start establishing its ESG objectives, your company can keep a few steps in mind:
*Understand the value of ESG goal setting
*Assess your ESG baseline before you set your goals
*Familiarize yourself with and set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time) goals.
*Measure ESG goals and set timelines by creating KPIs
*Share and announce your ESG goals
Think only a number cruncher can efficiently convert tax losses into assets?
Well, why it might not carry engraved business cards, direct indexing also can turn that trick, according to advisorperspectives.com.
Case in point: with clouds threatening a repeat performance in the portfolios of your clients this year – especially in light of the volatility more than making its presence felt in the financial markets. Sure, with intense inflation, the Ukraine war and supply chain headaches putting a dent in corporate profits, the Fed’s stoking rates at a seemingly breakneck pace. Yeah; yowser. That said, however, the market’s volatility yields an idyllic chance to not only tax loss harvest but also showcase how direct indexing – with room to spare, most effectively experiences the reverberations of tax loss harvesting benefits, the site continues.
Against the backdrop of volatility, of course, with direct indexing, the investors owns the individual securities rather than a comingled fund, according to russellinvestments.com. While losses absorbed on receding stocks belong to them, down the line, those setbacks can be leveraged to offset gains. That can mean a significant boost toward paring down the tax bill of the investor.
Direct indexing has recently become a hot topic in the financial industry and for advisors looking to differentiate themselves from the pack, fund giant Vanguard recently identified four situations that they should consider using direct indexing. The first is tax-loss harvesting. For example, when an index is up, some of its holdings can be trading at a loss. An investor in a direct indexing strategy can sell those stocks and create a tax loss that can be used to offset taxes that are due as a result of an overall gain for the index. The firm also lists ESG as another reason. A custom index can be designed to avoid shares of firms involved with fossil fuels. The third situation is factor investing, or investing in companies that have specific factors such as growth, value, or quality. A custom index can be created to meet those criteria. The last situation Vanguard recommends is diversification. A custom index can be built to accommodate an investor that may be required to hold a certain number of shares in his or her employer.
Finsum:According toVanguard, tax-loss harvesting, ESG, factor investing, and diversification are four strategies that advisors should consider when building custom indexes.
While the SEC has been pushing public companies to improve their cybersecurity, minimal adoption of stronger cybersecurity rules has led the agency to draft new rules requiring more formal cybersecurity reporting and disclosure. The SEC proposal outlined several requirements that are designed to improve cybersecurity awareness and reporting for corporate executives and board members. The first is cybersecurity incident reporting, including current reporting about material incidents and periodic reporting about previous incidents. The second requirement is cybersecurity policies such as periodic reporting about policies and procedures to identify and manage risks. The third proposal is management requirements including management’s role and expertise in assessing and managing risk and management’s role and expertise in implementing policies and procedures. The final requirement is board oversight such as reporting on how the board of directors performs oversight on cybersecurity and disclosure of the board of directors’ cybersecurity expertise if any.
Finsum:The SEC recently drafted new cybersecurity rules for companies, including incident reporting, policies, management requirements, and board oversight.