Government to strengthen investor protection
Proposed legislation introduced today would protect investors and recognize the work of the many qualified and hardworking financial advisors in Alberta.
If passed, the Securities Amendment Act, 2017, would put Alberta at the forefront of investor protection by providing the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada and the Mutual Fund Dealers Association with the same enforcement powers as the Alberta Securities Commission.
This change would empower both organizations to compel attendance and the production of evidence during investigations and hearings, allowing them to better protect Albertans’ investments. Those enforcing Alberta’s securities laws would also be immune from civil liability, allowing them to enforce the law effectively without fear of liability.
"Albertans deserve to be protected and to know that their money is in the hands of a qualified financial advisor. Our government is making practical changes to ensure that our province’s securities laws are enforced, so Albertans can have confidence in the financial services industry knowing that they’re held to a high standard."
"I’ve heard too many heart-wrenching stories of individuals who lost their life savings because they trusted the wrong person: an unscrupulous financial advisor. Today’s changes will help hold wrongdoers to account. We welcome today’s announcement as a critical step in bringing rule-breakers to justice and deterring wrongdoing, thus better protecting investors in this province. We look forward to additional, practical steps like this from the Government of Alberta."
The Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and the Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada (MFDA) have delegated regulatory authorities in Alberta. IIROC oversees all investment dealers and trading activity on debt and equity marketplaces. The MFDA regulates the operations, standards of practice and business conduct for the distribution side of the mutual fund industry.
"We congratulate the Minister of Finance and the Government of Alberta for their leadership in being at the forefront of investor protection in Canada. With these legislative changes, Alberta becomes the first province in Canada to provide IIROC with a complete toolkit, enabling us to more effectively fulfil our responsibilities as a public interest regulator and bring wrongdoers to justice."
"Strong investor protection is a critical component of our mandate, and we support meaningful and practical regulatory advances such as this that can have a real impact on protecting Albertans from financial misconduct."
Strengthening enforcement powers of regulatory organizations is part of Alberta’s ongoing commitment to work with other jurisdictions to reform Canada’s securities regulatory system. Similar changes are planned by other jurisdictions, including Quebec.