SEC Hits Stifel and BMO Capital with Big Fines

September 16, 2019 | News, Regulations
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Firms provided incomplete or inaccurate data to the agency

Stifel Nicolaus will pay $2.7 million, while BMO Capital Markets will pay $1.95 million to settle charges with the SEC. The firms provided incomplete and inaccurate securities trading information to the SEC.

The agency said Monday that broker-dealers must provide information known as “blue sheet data” to the SEC. The agency uses this information to carry out its enforcement and regulatory obligations. This includes any related investigations for fraud.

Here’s What Stifel Nicolaus and BMO Did Wrong

According to the SEC, Stifel Nicolaus and BMO each made numerous deficient blue sheet submissions containing missing or inaccurate data over a period of years. The agency said that Stifel “failed to report data for approximately 9.8 million transactions and provided inaccurate information for approximately 1.4 million transactions.”

The agency said that BMO offered incorrect or missing data on 5.4 million transactions. According to the SEC’s orders, neither firm had adequate processes designed to validate the accuracy of its submissions. The firms reportedly violated the broker-dealer books and records and reporting provisions of the federal securities laws.

“Firms that do not provide accurate and complete data in response to our requests undermine our efforts to detect wrongdoing and protect Main Street investors,” said Kelly Gibson, Associate Director of the SEC’s Philadelphia Regional Office. “We will continue to hold firms accountable for not taking these obligations seriously.”

The firms admitted the findings in the SEC’s cease and desist orders.

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