Wednesday, November 13, 2013

FINRA Announces Enhanced BrokerCheck System

By Tim Dulaney, PhD, FRM and Tim Husson, PhD

Yesterday the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority announced an enhanced version of their BrokerCheck system.  We regularly suggest that investors consult FINRA's BrokerCheck since these records contain important information about complaints and specific actions about individual brokers and firms.  According the FINRA Executive Vice President Derek Linden, investors "using BrokerCheck will encounter a more user-friendly interface that allows them to quickly find information that can help them decide if an investment professional is right for them."  

The new incarnation of BrokerCheck has a more intuitive feel and presents investors with a graphical timeline of a broker's experience.  This timeline shows the employment history with prior registrations and includes disclosure events.  The timing of these disclosure events can be particularly enlightening when the broker changes firms following around the time of such an event.

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