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NFA Manual / Rules

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Compliance Rules

[Adopted effective June 28, 2002. Effective dates of amendments: December 1, 2003; November 30, 2005; February 13, 2007; October 25, 2007; April 1, 2009; October 18, 2010; and October 1, 2011.]

(a) General Prohibition

No Forex Dealer Member shall engage in any forex transaction that is prohibited under the Commodity Exchange Act.

(b) Fraud and Related Matters

No Forex Dealer Member or Associate of a Forex Dealer Member engaging in any forex transaction shall:

    (1) Cheat, defraud or deceive, or attempt to cheat, defraud or deceive any other person;

    (2) Willfully make or cause to be made a false report, or willfully to enter or cause to be entered a false record in or in connection with any forex transaction;

    (3) Disseminate, or cause to be disseminated, false or misleading information, or a knowingly inaccurate report, that affects or tends to affect the price of any foreign currency;

    (4) Engage in manipulative acts or practices regarding the price of any foreign currency or a forex transaction;

    (5) Willfully submit materially false or misleading information to NFA or its agents with respect to forex transactions;

    (6) Embezzle, steal or purloin or knowingly convert any money, securities or other property received or accruing to any person in or in connection with a forex transaction.

(c) Just and Equitable Principles of Trade

Forex Dealer Members and their Associates shall observe high standards of commercial honor and just and equitable principles of trade in the conduct of their forex business.

(d) Doing Business with Non-Members

No Member may carry a forex account for, accept a forex order or account from, handle a forex transaction for or on behalf of, receive compensation (directly or indirectly) for forex transactions from, or pay compensation (directly or indirectly) for forex transactions to any non-Member of NFA, or suspended Member, that is required to be registered with the Commission as an FCM, RFED, IB, CPO, or CTA in connection with its forex activities and that is acting in respect to the account, order, or transaction for a forex customer, a forex pool or participant therein, a forex client of a commodity trading advisor, or any other person unless:

    (1) the non-Member is a member of another futures association registered under Section 17 of the Act or is exempted from this prohibition by Board resolution; or

    (2) the suspended Member is exempted from this prohibition by the Appeals Committee.

(e) Supervision

Each Forex Dealer Member shall diligently supervise its employees and agents in the conduct of their forex activities for or on behalf of the Forex Dealer Member. Each Associate of a Forex Dealer Member who has supervisory duties shall diligently exercise such duties in the conduct of that Associate's forex activities for or on behalf of the Forex Dealer Member.

(f) BASIC Disclosure

When a customer first opens an account and at least once a year thereafter, each Forex Dealer Member shall provide each customer with written information regarding NFA's Background Affiliation Status Information Center (BASIC), including the web site address.

(g) Filing Promotional Materials with NFA.

The Compliance Director may require any Forex Dealer Member for any specified period to file copies of all promotional material with NFA for its review and approval at least 10 days prior to its first use or such shorter period as NFA may allow. The Compliance Director may also require a Forex Dealer Member to file for review and approval copies of promotional material prepared or used by some or all of the non-Members it is responsible for under Section (d).

(h) Hypothetical Results

Any Member who uses promotional material that includes a measurement or description or makes any reference to hypothetical forex transaction performance results that could have been achieved had a particular trading system of the Member or Associate been employed in the past must comply with Compliance Rule 2-29(c) and the related Interpretive Notice as if the performance results were for transactions in on-exchange futures contracts.

(i) Customer Accounts

A Forex Dealer Member must notify NFA prior to commencing customer business.

(j) FDM Chief Compliance Officer

Each Forex Dealer Member shall designate one or more principal(s) to serve as Chief Compliance Officer(s) (CCO). Each CCO must certify annually to NFA that the FDM has a process in place to establish, maintain, review, modify and test policies and procedures that are reasonably designed to achieve compliance with the CEA, CFTC Regulations and orders thereunder, and NFA Requirements. Each CCO must also certify that the FDM has compliance processes in place and that the CCO has apprised the FDM’s chief executive officer (or equivalent management personnel) of the FDM’s compliance efforts to date, as well as identified any significant compliance problems and the CCO’s plan to address those problems. Each FDM must file this annual certification with NFA at the time it files it annual certified financial report.

(k) CFTC Forex Regulations

Any Member or Associate that violates any of CFTC Regulations 5.2, 5.5, 5.10 through 5.19 or 5.23, as applicable, shall be deemed to have violated an NFA Requirement.

(l) Customer Information and Risk Disclosure

    (1) Each Member or Associate shall, in accordance with the provisions of this subsection, obtain information from all customers and provide such customers with disclosure of the risks of forex trading.

    (2) The Member or Associate shall exercise due diligence to obtain the information and shall provide the risk disclosure at or before the time a customer first opens a forex trading account with or introduced by the Member or first authorizes the Member to exercise discretionary trading authority in a forex trading account. For an active customer who is an individual, the Member acting as the counterparty to the customer shall contact the customer, at least annually, to verify that the information obtained from the customer under paragraph (3) remains materially accurate, and provide the customer with an opportunity to correct and complete the information. Whenever the customer notifies the Member acting as the counterparty to the customer of any material changes to the information, a determination must be made as to whether additional risk disclosure is required to be provided to the customer based on the changed information. If an FCM or IB Member introduces the customer’s account or a CTA Member exercises discretionary trading authority over the account, then the Member acting as the counterparty to the customer must notify that FCM, IB or CTA Member of the changes to the customer’s information. The Member or Associate who currently solicits and communicates with the customer is responsible for determining if additional risk disclosure is required to be provided based on the changed information. In some cases, this may be the Member introducing or controlling the account; in other cases, it may be the Member acting as the counterparty to the customer account.

    (3) The information to be obtained from the customer shall include at least the following:

      (i) The customer's true name and address, and principal occupation or business;

      (ii) For customers who are individuals, the customer's current estimated annual income and net worth. For all other customers, the customer's net worth or net assets and current estimated annual income, or where not available, the previous year's annual income;

      (iii) For individuals, the customer's approximate age or date of birth;

      (iv) An indication of the customer's previous investment, futures trading and forex trading experience; and

      (v) Such other information deemed appropriate by such Member or Associate to disclose the risks of forex trading to the customer.

    (4) The risk disclosure to be provided to the customer shall include at least the following:

      (i) the Risk Disclosure Statement required by CFTC Regulation 5.5, if the Member is required by that Regulation to provide it; and

      (ii) the Risk Disclosure Statement required by CFTC Regulation 4.34, if the Member is required by that Regulation to provide it.

    (5) In the case of an account introduced by a Member or an account for which a Member CTA exercises discretionary trading authority, and except as otherwise provided in paragraph (2), it shall be the responsibility of the Member soliciting the account to comply with this Rule. However, if the account is introduced or managed by a non-NFA Member, it shall be the sole responsibility of the Member acting as a counterparty to the transaction to comply with this rule.

    (6) A Member or Associate shall be entitled to rely on the customer (as the sole source) for the information obtained under paragraph (3) and shall not be required to verify such information.

    (7) Each Member or Associate shall make or obtain a record containing the information obtained under paragraph (3) at the time the information is obtained. If a customer declines to provide the information set forth in paragraph (3), the Member or Associate shall make a record that the customer declined, except that such a record need not be made in the case of a non-U.S. customer. Each Member shall keep copies of all records made pursuant to this Rule in the form and for the period of time set forth in CFTC Regulation 1.31.

    (8) Each Member shall establish and enforce adequate procedures to review all records made pursuant to this Rule and to supervise the activities of its Associates in obtaining customer information and providing risk disclosure.

    (9) Nothing herein shall relieve any Member from the obligation to comply with all applicable CFTC Regulations and NFA Requirements.

(m) Scope

This rule governs forex transactions as defined in Bylaw 1507(b).

(n) Exemptions for Certain Transactions

Transactions entered into through a Member to hedge currency exposure from positions on regulated exchanges are exempt from all forex requirements except sections (b) and (c) of this rule if the on-exchange transactions are handled by the same Member.

(o) Definition of Customer

For purposes of this rule, the term "customer" means a counterparty that is not an eligible contract participant as defined in Section 1a(12) of the Act.

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