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MiFID II, US federal securities laws and investment research: The compliance challenge
MiFID II’s restrictions governing the acquisition of third party research conflict in several key aspects with the US Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) regulation of consumers and producers of investment research. The SEC’s staff issued three ‘no-action’ letters intended to enable buy-side and sell-side firms to comply with MiFID II’s restrictions without running afoul of US federal securities laws. While the letters provide more certainty, drafting ambiguities in the letters have caused some compliance challenges to remain. In addition, the limited scope of the relief provided by the no-action letters means that different rules may apply to US buy-side and sell-side intermediaries based solely upon whether they are dealing with a party subject to MiFID II or not.
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Ethan D. Corey is a Senior Vice President and Associate General Counsel in the Legal Department of MFS Investment Management. Mr Corey joined MFS in December 2004. Prior to joining MFS, Mr Corey was a counsel at Dechert LLP, where he specialised in investment company, variable insurance product and broker-dealer/FINRA issues. From 2003 to 2004, Mr Corey also served as an adjunct professor of law at the Columbus School of Law of the Catholic University of America. Mr Corey also previously practiced at the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Divisions of Investment Management and Market Regulation.