Kurt Schacht, JD, CFA, is managing director of the Standards and Financial Market Integrity division at CFA Institute, where he oversees all advocacy efforts and the development, maintenance, and promotion of the highest ethical standards of practice for the global investment management industry.
It is common knowledge that many opinion polls rate the financial services industry very low on the scale of trust and integrity. Theories abound on why that is.
One of the perpetual ethics issues facing the finance industry is the general theme of mis-selling of financial products. CFA Institute has been tracking the issue in annual polls and commenting on possible fixes for years. The sad truth is many financial professionals may not even know they are doing it. This is your year-end reminder to tune up your act.
Looked at through the lens of action cinema, there is almost enough intrigue and drama in the last four years of SEC oversight to launch a new movie series. Never before in our history has this agency, so critical to markets and investor protection, been as tested to its limits as it has since 2008.
Finance industry pundits are buzzing about the notion that an Obama win means a full-court press on the financial services industry. By our reckoning, we are struggling to see that outcome — the idea of some massive shift in either the pace of implementation or the rigor of Dodd-Frank rules in general. In the view of this Fearless Fiduciary, it feels more like “Dud Frank,” but perhaps there is hope.
The latest CFA Institute survey of U.S. members poses this question: Will the outcome of the election have an effect on the economy? A larger-than-expected 80% of our survey respondents say that it will have an important impact on the economy going forward.
Are private investment funds playing trick or treat with their fiduciary obligations and are institutional fiduciaries (your pension fund, for example) letting them get away with it? The answers are potentially frightening.
We’ve all seen what can go wrong with an IPO, even the more regulated variety such as the recent Facebook offering. Consider what could happen to mom-and-pop and small-cap investors under the JOBS Act.
With news that the Department of Justice and SEC won’t pursue cases against Goldman Sachs, it appears we’ll see few criminal trials stemming from possible wrongdoing that contributed to the global financial crisis.
Call it a change of heart, treachery to his class, or just plain seeing the light, Sandy Weill almost gave me a heart attack when he admitted that banks are out of control and, in fact, “ READ MORE ›
We need to send a blunt message to members of Congress to eliminate the unfair advantage they have over the average investor. Pass the STOCK Act.
The original Volcker vision was actually quite simple and straightforward: eliminate, or otherwise segregate, the risks posed by proprietary trading from the large conglomerate banks that nearly toppled the financial system in 2008. Unfortunately the resulting 300 pages of regulatory hieroglyphics that now pass for the rule proposal likely have its benefactor squirming at any association.
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