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Advisers Who Embellish Credentials Target of SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is putting registered investment advisers who inflate their professional credentials on notice: They may very well be called out for their fabrications.

At a compliance conference held last week by the National Regulatory Services (NRS), the SEC revealed that it is actively reviewing the ADV forms of advisers for what it calls “suspect” information.

“Some of the areas they’re looking at are education, business background, disciplinary disclosures and credentials,” said Marilyn Miles, vice president at NRS, in an Oct. 12 story by Investment News. “They’re not taking [those items] at face value anymore.”

In other words, if an investment adviser lists summa cum laude as part of his or her educational background it’s likely to be independently confirmed by the SEC.

In addition to using the Internet and other filings to verify information, SEC examiners plan to cross-check business experience information listed on Form U-4s and compare it to the ADVs.

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