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Pete Driscoll, SEC Exam Chief, to Depart

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What You Need to Know

  • Driscoll will depart the agency effective Aug. 14.
  • Daniel Kahl, the division’s deputy director, will be named acting director.
  • Driscoll leaves the agency as it conducts Phase 2 Regulation Best Interest exams.

Peter Driscoll, director of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Exam Division, said Wednesday that he’d depart the agency effective Aug. 14.

Daniel Kahl, the division’s deputy director, will be named acting director upon Driscoll’s departure.

“I thank Dan for stepping into the role of Acting Director of the Division of Examinations,” said SEC Chairman Gary Gensler in a statement. “Dan is an accomplished and respected leader at the SEC, and I look forward to working closely with him. I also thank Pete for his many valuable contributions to the SEC over his nearly two-decade career with the agency. I wish him the best of luck going forward.”

Driscoll, who led the exam division and its predecessor Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations, or OCIE, since January 2017, leaves the agency as it now conducts Phase 2 Regulation Best Interest exams.

Driscoll said in late May that Phase 2 exams are still in the “early stages,” but “these are much more in-depth exams.” Speaking at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s virtual annual conference, Driscoll said that the Phase 2 Reg BI exams are “looking at a lot of the trading, a lot of the recommendations” being made.

“We’ve employed our quantitative analytics unit to be involved in these exams,” Driscoll said. “We will continue to focus on policies and procedures and the effectiveness as well as the alternation of firm product offerings. We’ll also evaluate how firms are considering costs in a recommendation.”

Driscoll also said in early March that the exam division has “identified hundreds of firms that we believed should have filed a Form CRS but didn’t,” and that the division is “opening up exams on them to look at the requirements and whether or not that firm should have filed, particularly as they were nonresponsive to us.”

Driscoll previously served as the Division’s first chief risk and strategy officer and as the division’s managing executive.

Kahl joined the SEC in 2001 and has served as a deputy director of the Division of Exams since 2018 and as the division’s chief counsel since 2016.

Prior to joining the exam division, Kahl led the Division of Investment Management’s Office of Investment Adviser Regulation. Earlier, Kahl was an attorney at the Investment Adviser Association, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the North American Securities Administrators Association.