#NIRI sees new SEC Director as a Prosecutor #SEC #Governance

National Investors Relations Institute or NIRI.com as many know of it in their weekly newsletter commented on President Obama’s choice of Mary Jo White to the directorship of SEC. Here is the unabridged comment

Headlining the regulatory news last week was President Obama’s nomination of former prosecutor, Mary Jo White, as the new SEC Chair. I view the pick as somewhat surprising. White is known for prosecuting financial crime and aggressively pursuing terrorist suspects as the U.S. Attorney General for the Southern District of New York. Given the SEC has never been chaired by a former prosecutor, many view the move as a signal that Obama intends enforcement to be the SEC’s primary driver over the next few years. My main concern is how will this influence the SEC’s attention to the regulatory matters that impact NIRI members such as those related to capital markets, financial reporting and corporate governance? White’s husband is John White, former head of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance, so she obviously has a bit of a support network in these critical matters. I look forward to tracking the confirmation hearings closely and sharing more with you in the coming weeks.


Jeff Morgan, FASAE, CAE
President & CEO

My suspicion is we will see a more proactive sheriff on duty approach and less policy.

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective. Follow him on twitter@financialskepti or maybe follow his evil twin who is writing a Wall Street Murder Thriller at twitter@georgegutowski

NIRI holds Global Investor Relations Program in Miami Nov 16-18 #NIRI #ir #miami

Downtown Miami skyline as seen from Miami Beac...

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National Investors Relation Institute is holding a Global Investor Relations Program in Miami Nov 16-18. The program is targeting non US companies and assisting them navigate US investment markets. NIRI president  Jeff Morgan sees the program becoming a must do for non US-based IR practitioners.

Miami is usually sunny and warm. Miami is the business gateway to Latin America. Hopefully the outreach programs will also go to Asia and China so we can get investor relations onto one global page. Hong Kong or Shanghai?

George Gutowski writes from a caveat emptor perspective.

#NIRI echoes #SEC Director of Compliance Inspections and Examinations

Jeff Morgan, FASAE, CAE President & CEO of the National Investor Relations Institute wanted members to be aware of several key points in a recent speech by Carlo V. di Florio who now holds the key position of Director of Compliance Inspections and Examinations within the SEC.

So investors as you are dealing with a publicly traded company, whose head of investors relations is most likely a member of NIRI you should be able to identify the following points:

 Governance. This refers to boards of directors and senior management setting a tone at the top and providing compliance and ethics programs with the necessary resources, independence, standing, and authority to be effective.

Culture and Values.Corporate leadership promoting integrity and ethical values in decision-making across the organization and requiring accountability.


Incentives and Rewards.Incorporating integrity and ethical values into performance management systems and compensation so the right behaviors are encouraged and rewarded, while inappropriate behaviors are firmly addressed.


Risk Management.Ensuring effective processes to identify, assess, mitigate and manage compliance and ethics risk across the organization.


Policies and Procedures.Establishing, maintaining and updating policies and procedures that are tailored to the business, risks, regulatory requirements and the conflicts of interest in the business model.


Communication and Training.Training that is tailored to your specific business, risk and regulatory requirements, and is roles-based so that each critical partner in the compliance process understands their roles and responsibilities.


Monitoring and Reporting.Monitoring, testing and surveillance functions that assess the health of the system and report critical issues to management and the board.


Escalation, Investigation and Discipline.Ensuring there are processes where employees can raise concerns confidentially and anonymously, without fear of retaliation, and that matters are effectively investigated and resolved with fair and consistent discipline.


Issues Management.Ensuring that root cause analysis is done with respect to issues that are identified so effective remediation can occur in a timely manner.


On-going Improvement.Ensuring the organization has a process to proactively keep pace with developments and leading practices as part of a commitment to a culture of ongoing improvement.