FINRA Requires New Exam for Investment Bankers
FINRA has adopted a new registration and testing category for those engaged in investment banking and their supervisors. Such persons must pass the new Series 79 exam titled “Limited Representative – Investment Banking Qualification Examination.” For Reps that already have their Series 7, they may avoid the exam by opting into the registration by May 3, 2010. After that, the exam will be required. FINRA broadly defines the activities requiring registration to include advising on securities offerings including underwriting, marketing, or pricing and advising on mergers and acquisitions including the rendering of fairness opinions. Supervising principals must also take the Series 79.
OUR TAKE: We think this ends any question whether investment banking, private equity, venture capital or related activities require BD registration and licensing.