MSRB Municipal Advisor Review - Spring 2016

MSRB Municipal Advisor Review

Upcoming Events

The MSRB is hosting several educational webinars about municipal advisor rules going into effect in the next six months. All webinars are free and open to all, however registration is required.

MSRB Webinar: Limitations on Gifts 

Thursday, March 24, 2016
3:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m. ET

MSRB staff will review changes to MSRB Rules G-20 and G-8 to extend restrictions regarding gift giving and the related recordkeeping requirements currently applicable to brokers, dealers, and municipal securities dealers to municipal advisors. Register

MSRB Webinar: Duties of Municipal Advisors

Thursday, April 28, 2016
3:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m. ET 

MSRB staff will review the key provisions of MSRB Rule G-42, including the specific duties of care and loyalty that are components of the federal fiduciary duty for municipal advisors when dealing with municipal entity clients. Register

MSRB Webinar: Political Contributions

Thursday, July 7, 2016
3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. ET

MSRB staff will review the new key provisions of MSRB Rule G-37 that extend requirements to municipal advisors related to their political contributions and engagement in municipal advisory business. Register

2016 to Bring Changes to Municipal Advisory Business

Over the coming months, municipal advisors are required to comply with several new standards of conduct established by the MSRB and to continue to obtain professional qualifications in order to advise state and local governments on public finance decisions. This regulatory framework, established under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, seeks to ensure municipal entities and the taxpayers that support them are protected from, among other things, fraud, manipulation and conflicts of interest.

Standards of Conduct
The cornerstone of the MSRB’s regulatory framework for municipal advisors is MSRB Rule G-42, on duties of non-solicitor advisors, which takes effect June 23, 2016.This rule addresses specific duties of care and loyalty that are components of the federal fiduciary duty established under the Dodd-Frank Act for municipal advisors when dealing with municipal entity clients. View Rule G-42 to learn more about required disclosure of conflicts of interest, documentation of the advisory relationship, recommendations of transactions or products and specified prohibitions.

Market Integrity
As of August 17, 2016, municipal advisors will be subject to amendments to MSRB Rule G-37 on political contributions that extend the MSRB’s well-established municipal securities dealer pay-to-play rule to municipal advisors, including those acting as third-party solicitors. This important rule will support integrity of the municipal market and help ensure that municipal advisory business is awarded on the basis of merit. View the revised rule to understand the new provisions that apply to municipal advisors related to municipal advisory business and contributions to certain officials of municipal entities.

Amendments to another rule, MSRB Rule G-20, will limit the size and nature of gifts given by municipal advisors in their professional capacity advising state and local governments. Effective May 6, 2016, the changes will address conflicts of interest that may arise from gift-giving in connection with municipal advisory activities.

Emphasis on Education
As advisors implement these important new regulations, the MSRB is shifting its primary focus from creating rules to supporting rule compliance. The MSRB will continue to add to its library of online resources and webinars to help municipal advisors understand their regulatory obligations. Resources include a recording of a live compliance outreach program for municipal advisors recently co-hosted by the MSRB, Securities and Exchange Commission and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. 

More Than 1,600 Advisors Take Pilot Municipal Advisor Exam

In preparation for the development of a permanent qualification exam for municipal advisors, more than 1,600 municipal advisor professionals representing over 350 firms took the pilot Municipal Advisor Representative Qualification Examination (Series 50) In January and February 2016. These volunteer test-takers will help determine the passing score and validate the question bank for the permanent Series 50 exam, which the MSRB expects to launch in the fall of 2016. The MSRB’s Series 50 exam is the first qualifying examination for municipal advisors. Read more about the development of the Series 50 exam.


CD Email Alerts

Municipal advisors can keep track of their clients’ recent disclosure filings and the secondary market trading activity of their clients’ bonds with MyEMMA alerts. Set up personalized alerts to receive an email when new disclosures are posted to the Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA®) website, or sign up for a daily recap when trades occur in selected securities.

Learn how to get started with MyEMMA alerts.