MSRB Seeks Input on Draft FAQs on Use of Social Media in Advertising

Date: August 14, 2018

Contact: Jennifer A. Galloway, Chief Communications Officer


Washington, DC –
The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) today sought comment from regulated entities and other stakeholders about draft answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) addressing the use of social media in advertising by municipal advisors and municipal securities dealers and their associated persons.

“As social media becomes a more common communication tool, developing effective compliance policies and procedures for digital interactions is increasingly important for municipal market participants,” said MSRB President and CEO Lynnette Kelly. “The MSRB recognizes that municipal advisors, in particular, need guidance as they prepare to comply with newly established advertising regulations.”

New MSRB Rule G-40, on advertising by municipal advisors – together with amendments to MSRB Rule G-21, on advertising by municipal securities dealers – becomes effective on February 7, 2019. The MSRB has committed to providing guidance in advance of the effective date to assist regulated entities as they develop their compliance policies and procedures. In addition to today’s draft guidance on social media, the MSRB has sought feedback on draft FAQs on the use of municipal advisory client lists and case studies under Rule G-40. Next month, the MSRB plans to seek input on draft guidance related to Rule G-40’s content standards. 

The MSRB developed today’s draft FAQs to enhance market participants’ understanding of permissible and impermissible uses of social media in the context of MSRB advertising regulations and certain other MSRB rules. The draft guidance was crafted with the purpose of maintaining consistency with the guidance of other regulators under comparable advertising regulations.  

Read the request for comment. Comments should be submitted no later than September 14, 2018.

The MSRB protects investors, state and local governments and other municipal entities, and the public interest by promoting a fair and efficient municipal securities market. The MSRB fulfills this mission by regulating the municipal securities firms, banks and municipal advisors that engage in municipal securities and advisory activities. To further protect market participants, the MSRB provides market transparency through its Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA®) website, the official repository for information on all municipal bonds. The MSRB also serves as an objective resource on the municipal market, conducts extensive education and outreach to market stakeholders, and provides market leadership on key issues. The MSRB is a self-regulatory organization governed by a 21-member board of directors that has a majority of public members, in addition to representatives of regulated entities. The MSRB is overseen by the Securities and Exchange Commission and Congress.