FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority)
FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) is a U.S. independent, non-governmental, non-profit, self-regulatory organization that regulates, intermediates, and oversees compliance with the laws of stock exchanges and their member brokers and dealers. FINRA regulates trading in equities, corporate bonds, securities futures, and options.
FINRAs mission is to "protect investors from potential malpractice and making sure the securities industry operates fairly and honestly". As part of its regulatory authority, FINRA conducts regulatory exams, which must be passed by professional securities market participants.
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority was formed as a result of consolidation of the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) with the member regulation, enforcement, and arbitration functions of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). The consolidation was approved by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in July 2007. The consolidation removed duplicate rules and reduced the cost and complexity of the compliance procedures.