2020 OCIE Exam Priorities Include New Emphasis on Compliance Programs; Retail Investors Remain Top Focus

Retail investors remain the top examination priority for the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) in its recently issued 2020 Examination Priorities and annual message from its leadership team. Most of OCIE’s 2019 priorities remain unchanged, with retail investors still the top examination priority and a continued focus on anti-money laundering; market infrastructure; and FINRA and the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board. Cybersecurity, also a 2019 priority, has been broadened to “information security,” and digital assets now specifically references financial technology. As new priorities, OCIE cited “additional focus areas” involving investment advisers, registered investment companies, broker-dealers and municipal advisers, including their compliance programs. This article discusses OCIE’s 2020 priorities and its leaders’ message. See our coverage of OCIE’s 2019 Examination Priorities; 2018 Examination Priorities; 2017 Examination Priorities; and 2016 Examination Priorities.

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