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Advisers still shaky on social media policy

In this photo illustration, a Facebook logo on a computer screen is seen through a magnifying glass held by a woman in Bern May 19, 2012. Picture taken May 19, 2012. REUTERS/Thomas Hodel

In this photo illustration, a Facebook logo on a computer screen is seen through a magnifying glass held by a woman in Bern May 19, 2012. Picture taken May 19, 2012.

By Jason Wallace and Suzanne Barlyn

(Reuters) – As the securities industry finally warms up to using social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn, regulators are discovering that brokerages and investment advisers are off to a rocky start.

Some firms are making major missteps as they ramp up their presence on the sites, and many do not even have social networking policies. Or if they do, many have inadequate guidelines.

And while many brokerages and investment advisers were once reluctant to use social media for their work, a growing number find they cannot ignore the marketing opportunity. They are increasingly using social media sites to increase their presence among customers and to recruit new business from investors.

A recent survey by the Massachusetts Securities Division found that 44 percent of the state’s investment advisers use at least one social media site. More are expected to use social media within the next year.

Social networking sites, however, have caused a great deal of angst for compliance departments at firms. Many compliance professionals have worried that using social media would expose their firms to scrutiny from regulators for, among other things, not saving copies of the messages sent through the sites.  Read More

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Posted on May 30, 2012, in #financing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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