Despite all the talk about restoring the public’s trust in the financial services industry, many financial professionals don’t believe the industry is better off than it was before the financial crisis. According to a recent survey by Labaton Sucharow and the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business, 47 percent of financial professionals say it’s likely that their competitors have engaged in unethical or illegal activity in order to gain an edge in the market, up from 39 percent in 2012. More than one-third of those earning $500,000 or more have witnessed wrongdoing firsthand in the workplace. And about a quarter would likely use non-public information to make a guaranteed $10 million if there was no chance of getting caught. “Allowing the status quo to persist is an open invitation to the next, perhaps more devastating, financial crisis,” the report says.
The New York Stock Exchange has launched a bitcoin index, NYXBT, which will track the daily price movements of the virtual currency, Fox Business is reporting. The value will be based upon a variety of select exchanges, giving it more legitimacy as more companies are accepting it as payment, including Overstock.com, Expedia and Dish Network. This is the second bitcoin-based deal for the NYSE. Earlier this year, the exchange participated in a $75 million funding round for Coinbase,a virtual bitcoin wallet that links to bank accounts.
Morgan Stanley announced a partnership with EverFi, a tech company that creates interactive learning tools for financial education, to launch Morgan Stanley Financially Fit, a digital financial education program. The curriculum consists of lessons using games, polls and simulations to teach lessons targeted at four age groups: grade school, high school, college and adulthood. Morgan Stanley is hoping the program will help advisors introduce conversations on money management, savings strategies, home ownership, college loans, identity theft and investment portfolios between clients and clients’ children. Financially Fit is initially available to Morgan Stanley financial advisors in Washington D.C., but the company said it plans to expand the program in the coming weeks.
Proper cybersecurity protections don’t just keep out hackers, they are also increasingly important to regulators. To connect the two, Docupace, a service for paperless processing of SEC and FINRA documents, and Security Snapshot, a cybersecurity company, have joined forces to create a new comprehensive security program. The companies will work with RIAs in phases to ensure smooth adoption of an infrastructure and workflow system that is both secure from cyber-criminals and compliant.