dollar signIt was the best of times, it was the worst of times. For investment advisers and others subject to the pay-to-play rules, that is. Although both vice presidential picks have gubernatorial experience, because Mike Pence is a sitting governor and Tim Kaine is a former governor, there are certain pay-to-play rules that apply to contributions to Trump/Pence that do not apply to Clinton/Kaine. Thus, the Pence pick has important implications for many companies and firms engaged in the financial services industry.

As reported by various news outlets, Governor Pence’s role with the Indiana Public Retirement System subjects contributions to the Trump/Pence ticket to the SEC’s and other pay-to-play rules. Violations of these rules can carry significant penalties. And the shadow of the pay-to-play fundraising restrictions has even caused some to speculate that Pence should resign as governor.


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Last week, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released its long-awaited report on the gathering and use of so-called “political intelligence.” While the report targets the role of political intelligence in the financial markets, it may fuel attempts to regulate this growing Washington industry by using federal lobbying laws as a model. The report also

Last week Qualcomm and New York State’s Comptroller, Thomas DiNapoli, announced that Qualcomm will begin posting its political spending on its website. In exchange, the NY Comptroller has agreed to drop the lawsuit it filed against the company.

As described here, last month the NY Comptroller sued Qualcomm on behalf of the state’s pension

Prominent Wall Street firm Goldman Sachs will pay almost $12 million to settle charges that one of its investment bankers made undisclosed campaign contributions to a state official responsible for awarding government contracts.

The case is the first SEC action for pay-to-play violations based on “in-kind” – meaning, non-cash – contributions to a political campaign.

Last week the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations issued a National Examination Risk Alert for brokers, dealers and municipal securities dealers regarding compliance with Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) Rule G-37. The Risk Alert noted that recent SEC examiners have observed practices that raise concerns whether firms are adequately complying with all of