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COVID-19: SEC and FINRA Issue Temporary Relief on Regulatory Obligations and Offers Guidance on BCP for Broker-Dealers

Published March 26, 2020

As the novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”) continues to spread and its impact on the U.S. financial market rapidly intensifies, brokers and dealer are presented with significant financial or operational challenges and risks. The SEC started taking action as early as of February 2020, granting continued assistance to and relief for advisors impacted by COVID-19.[1] On March 18, 2020, FINRA also published a FAQ with regards to COVID-19, listing a number of conditional temporary relief for member firms from certain regulatory obligations (as identified below).[2] Earlier this month, FINRA also published a notice encouraging member firms to review their business continuity plans (“BCPs”) to ensure they fit the effect of an infectious-disease pandemic on each firm’s operations and risk profile.[3]

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