Michael Oxley Registers To Lobby For FINRA To Regulate RIAs

Monday, March 21, 2011 22:24
Michael Oxley Registers To Lobby For FINRA To Regulate RIAs

Tags: Congress | FINRA | sec

Having given his name to Sarbanes-Oxley, Michael Oxley, now a lawyer in private practice, has filed as a lobbyist on behalf of FINRA in order to plead that regulator's case in Congress for taking over RIA supervision. 

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Oxley expects to work toward the "harmonization" of the way brokers and RIAs are regulated, according to reporters who've seen the paperwork.


That likely entails arguing on Capitol Hill to get Congress to mandate that RIA supervision should pass from the SEC to a self-regulatory organization -- as suggested by the SEC itself months ago.


If that happens, FINRA -- in the absence of a real competitor -- will probably get the nod, thus "harmonizing" or consolidating both broker and RIA oversight within the same regulatory entity.


What's interesting about this is not so much the celebrity lobbyist angle but Oxley's track record for acting in what he sees as the best interests of retail investors. After all, Sarbanes-Oxley was the Dodd-Frank of its decade, and was fought just about as bitterly by elements of the industry establishment.


Maybe Oxley's just cashing a check here. But if he sincerely thinks retail clients would be better served with FINRA taking over RIA supervision, it'll be interesting to hear him make his case.

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