FINRA Fines Down 9% But Disciplinary Actions Up 13%

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) brought 1,310 disciplinary actions in 2010 up 13% from the 1,158 brought in 2009, according to a study announced by a firm which tracks FINRA cases. Interestingly, while the regulatory actions were up the monetary fines were down to roughly $45 million versus $50 million in 2009, or down about 9%.

In 2010 the largest amount of fines, $4.75 million, was the result of advertising and marketing violations by firms for misleading investors regarding auction rate securities (ARS) among other things. Cases involving improper communications to institutional investors involved with credit default swaps took second place with $4.5 million in fines. Electronic communication cases were third, generating $4 million in fines.

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