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FINRA’s Proposed Changes to BrokerCheck Helps Investors

FINRA has proposed a new rule regarding its BrokerCheck system, which gives investors access to information about a financial advisor’s business and disciplinary history. The new rule would “require its broker-dealer members to include a prominent description of, and link to, BrokerCheck…on their websites, social-media pages and any comparable Internet presence.”

Under this new proposed rule, “broker or firm’s website would have a direct link to the broker’s or firm’s specific BrokerCheck page. Investors would be able to click and go right to those pages rather than the home page for the BrokerCheck site.” This accessibility to BrokerCheck would help educate investors and promote transparency in the financial services industry.

The Federal Register notice stated “FINRA believes that the proposed rule change would increase investor awareness and use of BrokerCheck, thereby helping investors make informed choices about the individuals and firms with which they conduct business.”

Currently investors must go to FINRA’s BrokerCheck page and fill out search and access boxes before attaining a broker’s report. A direct link would increase accessibility and ease of use, which is a plus in today’s instant access world.

“The FINRA proposal on providing links to BrokerCheck from financial advisers’ websites will be open for public comment for 45 days from its Jan. 25 publication in the Federal Register.”