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SunTrust Might Face SEC Enforcement Actions Over Alleged Self-Serving Investment Recommendations

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is considering whether it will bring enforcement actions against Atlanta’s $205 billion-asset SunTrust Banks. SunTrust Investment Services, the bank’s broker-dealer arm, allegedly purchased pricey mutual funds on behalf of customers when more affordable alternatives were readily available. The SEC has made a…
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Mexico in Crosshairs Of Precedent Setting 2016 FCPA Enforcement Actions

It may come as no surprise that doing business in China holds a high risk of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations. However, the record-setting numbers of FCPA enforcement actions seen in 2016 placed Mexico in a close second. With increases in multi-jurisdictional anti-corruption enforcement, the FCPA Pilot…
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FINRA Fines Credit Suisse $16.5M for Anti-Money Laundering Program Failures

Credit Suisse Securities U.S.A. LLC has agreed to pay $16.5 million to resolve Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) allegations that the firm violated anti-money laundering (AML) program regulations, supervision requirements and other policies, FINRA reported Monday. Specifically, FINRA found that Credit Suisse’s U.S. division relied solely on registered…
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FINRA Enforcement Focus 2017: 6 Common Broker-Dealer AML Program Deficiencies

As the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) continues to crack down on broker-dealers with anti-money laundering program (AML)-related deficiencies, broker-dealers and AML compliance officers (AMLCOs) should take note of the most common AML program compliance deficiencies mentioned in recent FINRA enforcement actions. These top six areas of deficiency…
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Merrill Lynch Pays $7 Million Penalty for Inadequate Brokerage Account Supervision

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has fined Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc. $6.25 million for inadequately supervising its customers’ use of leverage in their Merrill brokerage accounts. The firm has also agreed to pay approximately $780,000 in restitution to 22 customers whose portfolios were over…
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FINRA Fines VALIC Financial Advisors $1.75M for Compensation Plan Conflicts of Interest

VALIC Financial Advisors Inc. has agreed to pay $1.75 million to resolve Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) allegations that the firm failed to implement reasonable systems to address and review conflicts of interest created by its compensation policy, FINRA reported Monday. The Houston-based subsidiary of American International Group…
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