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Feb 17 2009 - Dec 4 2011Dec 5 2011 onwards

2370. Security Futures

(a) For purposes of this Rule, the term "security future" shall have the definition specified in Section 3(a)(55) of the Exchange Act.
(b) Requirements
(1) General
(A) Applicability — This Rule shall be applicable to the trading of security futures.
(B) Subparagraph (15) shall apply only to security futures carried in securities accounts.
(C) Except to the extent that specific provisions in this Rule govern, or unless the context otherwise requires, the provisions of the FINRA By-Laws and rules and all other interpretations and policies of the Board of Governors shall also be applicable to the trading of security futures.
(2) Definitions
(A) The terms "Control," and "Controls," "Is Controlled by" or "Is Under Common Control With" shall have the same meanings as in Rule 2360.
(B) The term "principal qualified to supervise security futures activities" means a Registered Options Principal who, consistent with NASD Rule 1022, has either completed a firm-element continuing education requirement that addresses security futures and a principal's responsibilities for security futures or has passed a revised qualification examination for Registered Options Principals that covers security futures, or a Limited Principal-General Securities Sales Supervisor who, consistent with NASD Rule 1022, has either completed a firm-element continuing education requirement that addresses security futures and a principal's responsibilities for security futures or has passed a revised qualification examination for Limited Principal-General Securities Sales Supervisor.
(3) Reserved
(4) Reserved
(5) Reserved
(6) Reserved
(7) Reserved
(8) Restrictions on Security Futures Transactions
FINRA may impose from time to time such restrictions on security futures transactions that it determines are necessary in the interest of maintaining a fair and orderly market in security futures, or in the underlying securities covered by such security futures, or otherwise necessary in the public interest or for the protection of investors. During the period of any such restriction, no member shall effect any security futures transaction in contravention of such restriction.
(9) Reserved
(10) Reserved
(11) Delivery of Security Futures Risk Disclosure Statement
(A) Every member shall deliver the current security futures risk disclosure statement to each customer at or prior to the time such customer's account is approved for trading security futures. Thereafter, each new or revised security futures risk disclosure statement shall be distributed to every customer having an account approved for such trading or, in the alternative, shall be distributed not later than the time a confirmation of a transaction is delivered to each customer who enters into a security futures transaction. FINRA will advise members when a new or revised current security futures risk disclosure statement is available.
(B) Where a broker or dealer enters its orders with another member in a single omnibus account, the member holding the account shall take reasonable steps to assure that such broker or dealer is furnished reasonable quantities of the current security futures risk disclosure statement.
(C) Where an introducing broker or dealer enters orders for its customers with, or clears transactions through, a member on a fully disclosed basis and that member carries the accounts of such customers, the responsibility for delivering the current security futures risk disclosure statement as provided in this paragraph (b)(11) shall rest with the member carrying the accounts. However, such member may rely upon the good faith representation of the introducing broker or dealer that the current security futures risk disclosure statement has been delivered in compliance with paragraph (b)(11).
(12) Reserved
(13) Reserved
(14) Reserved
(15) Statements of Account
Statements of account showing security and money positions, entries, interest charges, and any special charges that have been assessed against such account during the period covered by the statement shall be sent no less frequently than once every month to each customer in whose account there has been an entry during the preceding month with respect to a security futures contract and quarterly to all customers having an open security futures position or money balance. Interest charges and any special charges assessed during the period covered by the statement need not be specifically delineated if they are otherwise accounted for on the statement and have been itemized on transaction confirmations. With respect to security futures customers having a general (margin) account, such statements shall also provide the market price, and market-to-market value and nominal value of each security futures position and other security positions in the general (margin) account (i.e., the market-to-market value of all security futures positions and the market value of all other security positions), the total value of all positions in the account, the outstanding debit or credit balance in the account, and the general (margin) account equity. The statements shall bear a legend stating that further information with respect to commissions and other charges related to the execution of security futures transactions has been included in confirmations of such transactions previously furnished to the customer, and that such information will be made available to the customer promptly upon request. The statements shall also bear a legend requesting the customer promptly to advise the member of any material change in the customer's investment objectives or financial situation.
(16) Opening of Accounts
(A) Approval Required
No member or person associated with a member shall accept an order from a customer to purchase or sell a security future, or approve the customer's account for the trading of security futures, unless the broker or dealer furnishes or has furnished to the customer the appropriate security futures risk disclosure statement and the customer's account has been approved for security futures trading in accordance with the provisions of subparagraphs (B) through (D) hereof.
(B) Diligence in Opening Accounts
In approving a customer's account for security futures trading, a member or any person associated with a member shall exercise due diligence to ascertain the essential facts relative to the customer, the customer's financial situation and investment objectives. Members shall establish specific minimum net equity requirements for initial approval and maintenance of customers' security futures accounts. Based upon such information, a principal qualified to supervise security futures activities shall specifically approve or disapprove in writing the customer's account for security futures trading. For account approvals, the written record shall include the reasons for approval.
(i) With respect to security futures customers who are natural persons, members shall seek to obtain the following information at a minimum (information shall be obtained for all participants in a joint account):
a. Investment objectives (e.g., safety of principal, income, growth, trading profits, or speculation);
b. Employment status (name of employer, self-employed, or retired);
c. Estimated annual income from all sources;
d. Estimated net worth (exclusive of family residence);
e. Estimated liquid net worth (cash, securities, or other);
f. Marital status and number of dependents;
g. Age; and
h. Investment experience and knowledge (e.g., number of years, size, frequency and type of transactions) for futures, commodities, options, stocks, bonds, and other financial instruments.
(ii) In addition, a customer's account records shall contain the following information, if applicable:
a. Source or sources of background and financial information (including estimates) concerning the customer;
b. Discretionary authorization agreement on file, name, relationship to customer, and experience of person holding trading authority;
c. Date disclosure document(s) furnished to customer;
d. Name of registered representative;
e. Name of principal approving account and date of approval; and
f. Dates of verification of currency of account information.
(iii) Members should consider using a standard account approval form to ensure the receipt of all the required information.
(iv) Refusal of a customer to provide any of the information specified in subparagraph (i) shall be so noted on the customer's records at the time the account is opened. Information provided shall be considered together with the other information available in determining whether to approve the account for security futures trading.
(v) A record of the information obtained pursuant to this subparagraph (B) and of the approval or disapproval of each account shall be maintained by the member as part of its records in accordance with paragraph (b)(17) herein.
(C) Verification of Customer Background and Financial Information
For every natural person whose account has been approved for security futures trading, the background and financial information upon which the account was approved shall be sent to the customer for verification within fifteen (15) days after the customer's account has been approved for security futures trading. This verification requirement shall not apply if the background and financial information is included in the customer's account agreement or if the member has previously verified the customer's information in connection with an options account. A copy of the background and financial information on file with a member also shall be sent to the customer for verification within fifteen (15) days after the member becomes aware of any material change in the customer's financial situation.
Members shall satisfy the initial and subsequent verification of customer background and financial information by sending to the customer the information required in subparagraphs (B)(i)(a) through (i)(f) hereof, as contained in the member's records and providing the customer with an opportunity to correct or complete the information. In all cases, absent advice from the customer to the contrary, the information will be deemed to be verified.
(D) Account Agreement
Within fifteen (15) days after a customer's account has been approved for security futures trading, a member shall obtain from the customer a written agreement that the customer is aware of and agrees to be bound by FINRA rules applicable to the trading of security futures and, that the customer has received a copy of the current security futures risk disclosure statement. In addition, the customer shall indicate on such written agreement that the customer is aware of and agrees not to violate applicable security futures position limits.
(17) Maintenance of Records
(A) In addition to the requirements of Rules 4511, and 4513, every member shall maintain and keep current a separate central log, index, or other file for all security futures-related complaints, through which these complaints can easily be identified and retrieved. The central file shall be located at the principal place of business of the member or such other principal office as shall be designated by the member. At a minimum, the central file shall include:
(i) identification of complainant;
(ii) date complaint was received;
(iii) identification of registered representative servicing the account;
(iv) a general description of the matter complained of; and
(v) a record of what action, if any, has been taken by the member with respect to the complaint.
For purposes of this subparagraph, the term "security futures-related complaint" shall mean any written statement by a customer or person acting on behalf of a customer alleging a grievance arising out of or in connection with security futures. Each security futures-related complaint received by a branch office of a member shall be forwarded to the office in which the separate, central file is located not later than 30 days after receipt by the branch office that is the subject of the complaint. A copy of every security futures-related complaint shall also be maintained at the branch office that is the subject of the complaint.
(B) Background and financial information of customers who have been approved for security futures trading shall be maintained at both the branch office servicing the customer's account and the principal supervisory office having jurisdiction over that branch office. Copies of account statements of security futures customers shall also be maintained at both the branch office supervising the accounts and the principal supervisory office having jurisdiction over that branch for the most recent six-month period. With respect solely to the above-noted record retention requirements applicable to principal supervisory offices, however, the customer information and account statements may be maintained at a location other than the principal supervisory office if such documents and information are readily accessible and promptly retrievable. Other records necessary to the proper supervision of accounts shall be maintained at a place easily accessible both to the branch office servicing the customer's account and to the principal supervisory office having jurisdiction over that branch office.
(18) Discretionary Accounts
(A) Authorization and Approval
(i) No member or person associated with a member shall exercise any discretionary power with respect to trading in security futures in a customer's account, or accept orders for security futures for an account from a person other than the customer, except in compliance with the provisions of NASD Rule 2510 and unless:
a. The written authorization of the customer required by NASD Rule 2510 shall specifically authorize security futures trading in the account; and
b. the account shall have been accepted in writing by a principal qualified to supervise security futures activities.
(ii) When analyzing an account to determine if it should be approved for security futures trading, each firm shall designate specific principals qualified to supervise security futures activities to review discretionary accounts. A principal other than the principal who accepted the account shall have a reasonable basis for believing that the customer was able to understand and bear the risk of the strategies or transactions proposed, and shall maintain a record of the basis for such determination. Every discretionary order shall be identified as discretionary on the order at the time of entry. Discretionary accounts shall receive frequent appropriate supervisory review by a principal qualified to supervise security futures activities who is not exercising the discretionary authority. The provisions of this subparagraph (18) shall not apply to discretion as to the price at which or the time when an order given by a customer for the purchase or sale of a definite number of security futures contracts in a specified security shall be executed, except that the authority to exercise time and price discretion will be considered to be in effect only until the end of the business day on which the customer granted such discretion, absent specific, written contrary indication signed and dated by the customer. This limitation shall not apply to time and price discretion exercised in an institutional account, as defined in Rule 4512(c), pursuant to valid Good-Till-Cancelled instructions issued on a "not held" basis. Any exercise of time and price discretion must be reflected on the order ticket.
(iii) Any member that does not utilize computerized surveillance tools for the frequent and appropriate review of discretionary activity must establish and implement procedures to require specific principals qualified to supervise security futures activities who have been designated to review discretionary accounts to approve and initial each discretionary order on the day entered.
(B) Record of Transactions
A record shall be made of every transaction in security futures contracts in respect to which a member or person has exercised discretionary authority, clearly reflecting such fact and indicating the name of the customer, the designation and number of the security futures contracts, the price of the contract, and the date and time when such transaction was effected.
(C) Security Futures Programs
Where the discretionary account uses security futures programs involving the systematic use of one or more security futures strategies, the customer shall be furnished with a written explanation of the nature and risks of such programs.
(19) Suitability
(A) No member or person associated with a member shall recommend to any customer any transaction or trading strategy for the purchase or sale of a security future unless such member or person associated with the member has reasonable grounds to believe upon the basis of information furnished by the customer after reasonable inquiry by the member or person associated with the member concerning the customer's investment objectives, financial situation and needs, and any other information known by the member or associated person, that the recommended transaction or trading strategy is not unsuitable for the customer.
(B) No member or person associated with a member shall recommend to a customer a transaction in any security future unless the person making the recommendation has a reasonable basis for believing, at the time of making the recommendation, that the customer has such knowledge and experience in financial matters that the customer may reasonably be expected to be capable of evaluating the risks of the recommended transaction, and is financially able to bear the risks of the recommended position in the security future.
(20) Reserved
(21) Violation of By-Laws and Rules of FINRA or a Registered Clearing Agency
(A) In FINRA disciplinary proceedings, a finding of violation of any provision of the FINRA rules, regulations, or by-laws of a registered clearing agency under Section 17A(b)(8) of the Exchange Act by any member or person associated with a member engaged in security futures transactions cleared by such registered clearing agency, may be deemed to be conduct inconsistent with just and equitable principles of trade and a violation of Rule 2010.
(B) In FINRA disciplinary proceedings, a finding of violation of any provision of the FINRA rules, regulations or By-Laws by any member or person associated with a member engaged in security futures transactions may be deemed to be conduct inconsistent with just and equitable principles of trade and a violation of Rule 2010.
(22) Reserved
(23) Reserved
(24) Security Futures Transactions and Reports by Market Makers in Listed Securities
Every member that is an off-board market maker in a security listed on a national securities exchange shall report to FINRA in accordance with such procedures as may be prescribed by the Board of Governors, transactions involving 50 or more security futures contracts on such listed securities that are either directly for the benefit of (A) the member or (B) any employee, partner, officer, or director of the member who, by virtue of his or her position with the member, is directly involved in the purchase or sale of the underlying security for the firm's proprietary account(s) or is directly responsible for supervision of such persons; or who by virtue of his or her position in the firm, is authorized to, and regularly does, obtain information on the proprietary account(s) of the member in which the underlying security is traded. This subparagraph shall apply to all security futures transactions including those executed on an exchange to which the member may belong.
(25) Trading Ahead of Customer Orders
Every member shall exercise due care to avoid trading ahead of a customer's security futures order. A member must exercise the due care required by this subparagraph when the member has gained knowledge of or reasonably should have gained knowledge of the customer's order prior to the transmission to a securities exchange of the member's order for a proprietary account, or for any account in which it or any person associated with it is directly or indirectly interested.
Amended by SR-FINRA-2011-065 eff. Dec. 5, 2011.
Amended by SR-FINRA-2010-045 eff. Oct. 7, 2010.
Amended by SR-FINRA-2008-032 and SR-FINRA-2009-005 eff. Feb. 17, 2009.
Adopted by SR-NASD-2002-40 eff. Oct. 15, 2002.

Selected Notice: 08-78.

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