SAN ANTONIO, March 7, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Those are just a few of the key themes highlighted Tuesday by Carlo di Florio, Director of the Securities and Exchange Commission's Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations, who delivered the keynote speech during Ascendant Compliance Management, Inc.'s compliance conference, "New Regulations plus Enterprise Risk Management Responsibilities," at the Westin Riverwalk Hotel in San Antonio, Texas. A room full of compliance officers and investment professionals from across the country listened to Mr. di Florio's remarks about the SEC's initiatives and recent efforts. In addition to the above Mr. di Florio addressed the rollout of its risk-based examination program, a new head of the Exam Program and other leaders, the role of its centralized systems and use of analytics, and how OCIE teams are working with other divisions: Enforcement, Investment Management, and Risk Management.
Ascendant was pleased to welcome Mr. di Florio, who provided tremendous insight into the SEC's new focus on risk-based examinations of investment advisers, and its departure from the traditional, cyclical examination approach. After announcing that the SEC is nearing the home stretch with rulemaking mandated by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Mr. di Florio spoke to Ascendant conference attendees about leveraging the risk analytics that the SEC is compiling to enable it to best allocate its examination resources.
According to Mr. di Florio, there is a "steady stream" of tips, complaints, and referrals that continue to flow into the new Office of the Whistleblower, providing a large source of information driving examination prioritization by the agency. Mr. di Florio also commented at length about new efforts by the agency to focus on enterprise risk management, whereby senior management and boards will become part of the examination process as the SEC strives to evaluate whether firms have a culture of compliance and risk management, and whether compliance personnel are given the appropriate authority and support within their organizations to perform their compliance roles effectively.
As a critical component of enterprise risk management, Mr. di Florio mentioned the importance of three lines of defense for investment advisers: (1) front-line business personnel, (2) compliance personnel with adequate resources and support, and (3) internal audits conducted by the firm or by outsourcing the compliance audit and review.
Ascendant CEO Jon Higgins noted, "Mr. di Florio's emphasis on the new focus of OCIE and trends in the industry is crucial to our clients' and attendees' understanding of compliance and operational best practices. With all the additional rules and requirements that everyone juggles every day, it is important that the industry have the opportunity to hear this message directly from the OCIE Director."
Mr. di Florio is joined by industry experts such as Kevin Goodman (Associate Regional Director, SEC), Steven Lentz (Partner, Faegre Baker Daniels), David Lui (CCO & Principal, Galliard Capital Management), Keith Marks (Partner, Ascendant Compliance), Marianne Smythe (former partner, Wilmer, Cutler, Pickering Hale and Dorr and former Director, SEC Division of Investment Management), and John Walsh (Partner, Sutherland Financial Services Group and former Associate Director/ Chief Counsel, OCIE, SEC), among others.
The conference consists of a comprehensive dialogue of the compliance obligations of registered investment advisers. The implementation of Dodd-Frank, the SEC's additional rule-making response to financial fraud, and the focus on enterprise risk management(ERM)present investment managers with more and greater challenges each day- Ascendant and industry experts come together to help firms find the most effective resources to cultivate a culture of compliance. Ascendant conferences offer the most up-to-date guidance and real-time access to the top regulatory authorities as well as compliance solutions that can be implemented in day-to-day operations.
Ascendant Compliance Management is located in Salisbury, CT, with offices in New York City and San Francisco, CA. Ascendant offers integrated compliance and business solutions for investment advisers, broker dealers, and hedge and private equity funds and provides educational conferences and online training. For more information on Ascendant's services, such as annual reviews, risk assessments, etc., or to sign up for email alerts, please visit their website at www.ascendantcompliance.com or call 860-435-2255.
About Ascendant Conferences + Education:
Ascendant Compliance Management's Conferences + Education team is dedicated to the advancement of compliance professionals in the investment management industry. The interactive approach follows all of the latest trends in SEC examinations (including the possibility of an SRO), risk assessments, insider trading, social media networks, compliance automation, ethics and fiduciary duty among other topics. The goal of the program is to equip compliance professionals with the necessary tools for developing and maintaining the highest standards of business practice management. For more information please visit www.ascendantcompliance.com.
SOURCE Ascendant Compliance Management