A securities industry working group has proposed a new fee disclosure model for broker-dealers. The working group – which was convened by the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) and included FINRA, SIFMA, the Financial Services Institute, and several broker-dealers – was created in the summer of 2014 with the goal of promoting accessibility, standardization, and transparency in the way in which miscellaneous account and service fees are disclosed to retail customers. The group created a model fee disclosure document known as the “Schedule of Miscellaneous Account and Service Fees” which it is encouraging broker-dealers to use on a voluntary basis. The fee disclosure schedule should be made available on a broker-dealer’s public website, without requiring any login or password, and should be readily printable in chart form from the website. A paper version of the schedule should be available upon request. According to the working group, the schedule is customizable, but “should be simple to read and structured in a way that makes it easy for investors to compare fees between firms.” The disclosures focus only on miscellaneous fees and services fees charged by broker-dealers and do not include commissions, markups, or advisory fees.
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