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91-72 Enhancements to the Firm Access Query System (FAQS)

SUGGESTED ROUTING:*

Legal & Compliance
Operations
Registration
Training
*These are suggested departments only. Others may be appropriate for your firm.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

On November 12, 1991, the NASD activated enhancements to the Firm Access Query System (FAQS) that will enable subscribers to more efficiently process Forms U-5 and access certain registration information about their active and pending representatives. For those subscribers that electronically file Form U-5, the ability to recall, display, and print the filing through the Central Registration Depository system will be available. Firms no longer will have to retain a hard copy of the electronically filed U-5. Through the enhanced query prompt, specific information about an agent's status and exam records can be viewed without the user having to review the individual's entire record.

These enhancements represent the first phase of system revisions designed to make the electronic processing of forms more cost effective and to improve the efficiency of the registration process.

BACKGROUND

The Firm Access Query System (FAQS) enables subscriber NASD member firms to review the registration and examination data, maintained on the Central Registration Depository (CRD), relating to their pending and registered individuals. Through FAQS, subscribers also may elect to schedule exams, review accounting transactions and balances, and file select Form U-4 amendments and U-5s electronically.

During the past year, the NASD set out to develop system enhancements that will promote increased utilization of the electronic filing process, streamline the access to certain key registration data elements, and provide a means for subscribers to efficiently reconcile filing deficiencies.

SYSTEM ENHANCEMENTS

With the support of present subscribers and the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), the NASD has designed system enhancements to FAQS. The most significant of these will result in a streamlined electronic form filing program no longer requiring retention of the hard copy filing. Using the new program, an electronically submitted U-5 form can be displayed and printed on demand. The firm, as well as all regulators, will have the ability to view and screenprint the filing summary. NASAA has agreed to accept this system-generated form display in lieu of the hard-copy form.

Firms that file electronically will benefit further as similar enhancements are scheduled in the near future. The updated version for page 1 and page 2 amendments to Form U-4 is slated to be activated by the end of 1991.

This most recent software revision will also provide more focused prompts within the Query command of CRD that will enable display of records by a specific affiliation/position and exam type. This new process will result in more efficient identification of relevant data without costly and time-consuming review of an agent's entire CRD display.

Questions about this notice, subscriber inquiries, and requests for access to FAQS should be directed to Ilene Taylor or Shirley Suggs in Member Services at (301) 590-6862.


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