The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has issued two new equity and debt research rules, which have been approved by the SEC. New FINRA rule 2241 modifies and consolidates current NASD Rule 2711 and NYSE Rule 471 and takes into account concepts included in the settlement entered into by investment banks and the SEC in 2003 (known as the Global Settlement). However, FINRA expressly stated that the new rule does not modify the terms of the Global Settlement, which will therefore still apply to the relevant investment banks. The new equity research rule will become effective in two stages, on 25 September 2015, and then on 24 December 2015.
New FINRA Rule 2242 relating to debt research contains the first rules specific to debt research analysts and their reports. The new rule imposes similar requirements as the equity research rules with some material differences and exemptions. The rule will become effective on 22 February 2016.