MSRB NOTICE 2010-55 (DECEMBER 13, 2010)

REMINDER TO MUNICIPAL ADVISORS ABOUT JANUARY 1, 2011 REGISTRATION DEADLINE

Municipal advisors are reminded of their obligation to register with the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (“MSRB”) as a result of the MSRB’s expanded regulatory authority under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.[1] Municipal advisors that have engaged in municipal advisory activities on or after October 1, 2010 must register with the MSRB by no later than December 31, 2010. In addition, any municipal advisor that engages in municipal advisory activities after December 31, 2010 without having first registered with the MSRB will be in violation of MSRB rules.[2]

MSRB Rules A-12, A-14 and G-40 govern the MSRB registration process for municipal advisors.  Rule A-12 requires the payment of an initial fee of $100 in connection with a firm’s first-time registration with the MSRB and Rule A-14 requires the payment of an annual fee of $500 per firm. Rule G-40 provides for the submission of information regarding the municipal advisor and one or more contacts within the firm. The MSRB’s registration requirement applies at the firm level so that individuals are not required to register with the MSRB as municipal advisors unless they are sole proprietors.

All municipal advisors must first register with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) through the SEC’s website on SEC Form MA-T prior to registering with the MSRB.  Municipal advisors are required to register with both the SEC and MSRB – registration with one regulatory organization will NOT satisfy the registration requirement of the other regulatory organization.

Any broker, dealer or municipal securities dealer (“dealer”) that acts as a municipal advisor is required to register with the MSRB as a municipal advisor even if the dealer has previously registered with the MSRB as a dealer.  A dealer that has previously paid the initial fee and has already paid the annual fee for the current year in connection with its activities as a dealer is not required to pay an additional initial or annual fee if it registers as a municipal advisor.  However, a municipal advisor that has previously registered with the MSRB as a dealer must register separately with the MSRB as a municipal advisor by updating its existing MSRB account.

Municipal advisor registration instructions are available on the registration page of the MSRB’s website, at www.msrb.org.

Questions about the registration process may be directed to the MSRB Market Information Department at 703-797-6668.

December 13, 2010


[1]  See “Expanded MSRB Mission; Rulemaking for Municipal Advisors,” MSRB Notice 2010-42 (October 1, 2010); “Application of MSRB Rules to Municipal Advisors,” MSRB Notice 2010-47 (November 1, 2010).

[2]  See “MSRB Amends Registration Rules for Dealers and Municipal Advisors,” MSRB Notice 2010-49 (November 15, 2010); “MSRB Opens Municipal Advisor Registration System,” MSRB Notice 2010-50 (November 15, 2010).