State securities regulators serve an important local enforcement function. In fact, state securities regulation precedes federal regulation by more than two decades. The North American Securities Administrators Association is an association of state, provincial and territorial securities regulators from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Canada, and Mexico. NASAA is just shy of one hundred years old.
Yesterday, NASAA released its enforcement report for 2015. Here are the highlights:
In its 2016 Enforcement Report on 2015 Data, which includes responses from 52 jurisdictions throughout the United States, NASAA reported that state securities regulators conducted 4,487 investigations in 2015 and took 2,074 enforcement actions. These actions led to more than $538 million in restitution ordered returned to investors, fines of $230 million and criminal relief of 1,282 years, including incarceration, probation and deferred prosecution.
Notably, this was the first time since NASAA began collecting enforcement data, more registered members of the securities industry than non-registered members were named in enforcement actions.