May 25, 2010
The purpose of this letter is to provide the Commission with comments on the above referenced rule filing which was filed by FINRA on or about April 16, 2010.
I am an attorney whose practice is exclusively devoted to the representation of public investors in their disputes with the securities industry.
Moreover, I am a current member of FINRAs National Arbitration and Mediation Committee and a past President and a current member of the Board of Directors of the Public Investors Arbitration Bar Association.
While the proposed expansion of information that is available to investors through the BrokerCheck program is admirable, I remain concerned with FINRA's decision to exclude other information that is equally as critical to the goals of investor education and protection.
For example, even after the presumed implementation of the expanded information that would be available through BrokerCheck if the proposed rule amendment were to be adopted, it is clear that BrokerCheck will still not include details on felony charges misdemeanor charges involving investment related business, fraud, wrongful taking of property, bribery, perjury, forgery, and other crimes of property employment terminations relating to allegations of violations of investment related statutes or fraud or bankruptcy and unsatisfied judgments or lien information.
In view of the fact that this information is captured on the Forms U4 and/or U5 that are applicable to all registered persons, and is available to the public under most state open records laws, there is no rational reason why this information should not also be included on BrokerCheck.
Thank you, in advance, for the opportunity to have provided you with my comments on this matter.