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The municipal advisor regulatory framework – where we are and where to next

Ernesto Lanza (Clark Hill LLP, Washington, DC, USA)

Journal of Investment Compliance

ISSN: 1528-5812

Article publication date: 2 May 2017




To describe the status of municipal advisor rulemaking by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB), and regulatory compliance approaches, under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act).


Examines the posture of the SEC, MSRB and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) upon completion of the MSRB’s core regulatory framework for municipal advisors. Explores threshold issues in determining municipal advisor status, approaches for preparing for and responding to initial regulatory compliance examinations by the SEC and FINRA, and key considerations in reviewing municipal advisor policies, procedures and business practices in light of the evolving regulatory and marketplace landscape.


SEC and FINRA compliance examiner feedback points to the expectation that municipal advisor policies, procedures, processes and records must be fully consistent with the firm’s business activities and must address each material aspect of all applicable MSRB and SEC rules, as well as the fiduciary duty of municipal advisors to their municipal entity clients under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.


Practical guidance from experienced securities and public finance attorney that provides a consolidated outline of key municipal advisor regulatory compliance obligations under the Dodd-Frank Act.



Lanza, E. (2017), "The municipal advisor regulatory framework – where we are and where to next", Journal of Investment Compliance, Vol. 18 No. 1, pp. 53-57.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017 Clark Hill PLC

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