News, Vision & Voice for the Advisory Community


Brian Hamburger hammers the FINRA SRO proposal in a letter

In his muscular style as a lawyer and insider in the regulatory realm, the MarketCounsel principal pulls no punches

Author Brian Hamburger and Dan Bernstein June 5, 2012 at 10:53 PM
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Brian Hamburger: The Bill's supporters are promoting a devious shell game to hinder the growth of an industry that has flourished by doing the right thing for investors.

Frederick Van Den Abbeel

Frederick Van Den Abbeel

June 5, 2012 — 11:08 PM

Thank you Mr. Hamburger and Mr. Bernstein for sharing your views. I and I’m sure many others are eagerly waiting for a final resolution.



June 6, 2012 — 6:09 PM

Thank you for sending your thoughtful comments. We need supporters of RIA firms to take action, and I appreciate your leadership.

Jay Hutchins

Jay Hutchins

June 7, 2012 — 1:29 AM

When I left the brokerage industry to become an RIA and align my interests with those of my clients and saw how much better I could serve them and at a fraction of the price they paid the brokerage houses in often hidden fees, I asked myself how long the brokerage industry would let this go on. Seventeen years later I have my answer. They will use FINRA to squash us like bugs and get back to the business of shafting the middle-income consumer who will no longer have an option. Thanks for your noble efforts Brian and Dan.

Elmer Rich III

Elmer Rich III

June 7, 2012 — 2:29 PM

The bitter adversarial polarization dominating the legitimate problem-discussion and problem-solving around the search for safety for an expanding advisory business is making advisors appear narrowly self-interested with little concern for investors.

No one is the good guy, no one the bad guy. Not even the regulators. Everyone is struggling, in good faith, to wrestle with a very fast growing global financial system and unprecedented complexity, technology and velocity.

Mistakes will always occur — on all sides. It’s human nature. However, self-righteousness, moralizing, demonizing and finger pointing are factually wrong and block real problem-solving.

If RIAs want to claim the moral high ground, they need to act to earn it. Right now, they are just sounding reactive, defensive and holier-than-thou. Acting impulsively on reactive fear and inopportune screeds hurt RIAs and their customers.

Jay Hutchins

Jay Hutchins

June 7, 2012 — 3:31 PM

I believe the point Brian, Dan, and many others of us are making is precisely that this is an illegitimate discussion around solutions to a problem that exists solely for the business interests of the retail brokerage industry. In place of “good faith” we have inserted millions of dollars in lobbying budgets to further those narrow self interests. And, we all know where nearly all of those dollars originate.

Polarized? Yes. Claims to higher moral ground? Yes, again. Right to higher moral ground? Look at the list of broker-dealers and their representatives who have been sanctioned, sued, or imprisoned. Then, look to non-duel-registrant RIAs who have been similarly cited, and draw your own conclusion.

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Mentioned in this article:

MarketCounsel | HamburgerLaw
Compliance Expert, RIA Set-up Firm, Regulatory Consultant
Top Executive: Brian Hamburger

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