An examination by the Securities and Exchange Commission's (SEC’s) Division of Examinations (EXAMS) can be intimidating for even the most seasoned registered investment adviser. Anticipating areas of focus, together with conscientious preparation, can help. EXAMS’ 2022 Examination Priorities and recent risk alerts address private funds, ESG, retail, cyber and digital assets, among other topics. However, in addition to these priorities, inevitably an SEC exam will focus on risks, conflicts and compliance challenges specific to that adviser.
This report, co-authored by Sidley and ACA Compliance Group, summarizes observations concerning EXAMS’ public priorities and our insights and practical considerations from recent exams.