July 17, 2009
Elizabeth M. Murphy, Secretary
Securities and Exchange Commission
I am a small investment adviser and have been since 1982. I am fee based only, and work exclusively for my clients and conduct research for them. A CPA based surprise of my client accounts each year makes no sense at all and bears too much expense for me to stay in business. My fees are competitive and I want them to stay that way. The expense of this audit would be a big burden to my business and make me ponder whether I should stay in this business.
Furthermore, I am research oriented, and have concluded heavily that the recent problems in the financial arena have been almost exclusively in the big firm area, where political connections, rule changes, and self regulation are at the heart of the problems. I am much more concerned with trading irregularities that I continue to observe in the specialist/market maker, and options market maker areas than whether I bill my client's brokerage acocunt for my quarterly management fees only, have a signed letter of authorization from my clients on file specifying that I can only take my earned quarterly fee only.
I believe this is an undue discrimination to smaller advisors who have to have high integrity and honesty foremost, or my clients would have never chose me.
I ask that the SEC allocate their efforts to far more lacking areas than imposing this burden of time and another big expense to smaller investment advisors. While you are costing us added expense and taking time from client attention and research, the big guys are continuing business as usual. I look forward to stricter regulation, far less exemptions, and a more level playing field for the individual investors in our country.
Thanks for my time,
Raymond L. Hines