Managing Partner Jason Wachtel discusses alt firms hiring SEC alumni

Posted on February 25th, 2015 by Kristy Wright Skeehan

Last week a Financial Times’ FundFire article by Laura Suter covered the recent trend of alternatives firms hiring former employees of the SEC and the US Attorney’s Office. In the article, JW Michaels managing partner Jason Wachtel explained these firms’ reasoning:

“By hiring someone who was a prosecutor and worked on significant cases, it sends a clear message to the investor base that [the manager is] really serious about compliance and transparency, and that investors don’t need to worry they are not going to be the next firm on the cover of a magazine saying ’we’re a Ponzi scheme.’ Investors really like that, in fact it’s like a tool to get more dollars, when managers are doing the roadshow they are not just talking about performance, but that they hired someone from the U.S. attorney’s office.”

Wachtel went on to warn, however, that when hiring individualt coming out of the SEC or as prosecutors, there can sometimes be a mismatch in salary expectations. At alt firms they could earn between $500,000 and $750,000 per year, but could go to a law firm and make over $1 million. Alt firms must take into consideration the candidate’s earning power elsewhere.

Visit FundFire to read the original article [paid subscription]: Alts Shops Raid SEC, Attorney’s Office for Compliance Hires by Laura Suter

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Managing Partner Jason Wachtel discusses Federal Prosecutor Move To Ackman Hedge Fund

Posted on February 24th, 2015 by Kristy Wright Skeehan

FundFire

A recent FundFire article by Maureen Brody features JW Michaels managing partner Jason Wachtel:

William Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management has hired former federal prosecutor Jenna Dabbs as senior counsel, The New York Times reports.

Dabbs, who headed the narcotics unit at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan for the past year-and-a-half, joined the $18 billion hedge fund about a week-and-a-half ago after eight years of federal service focused primarily on drug and securities cases. She will work on compliance and regulatory issues at Pershing Square, the Times notes.

She is one of an increasing number of veteran prosecutors who have moved to hedge funds or private equity firms rather than big law firms. She tells the Times she has known Ackman for “many years” and thinks it makes sense to have prosecutorial expertise on board in the highly regulated hedge fund industry. Having a former prosecutor on staff builds a fund company’s reputation with investors, especially large public pension plans, Jason Wachtel, a managing partner at recruitment firm JW Michaels & Company, tells the Times. It’s part of the message that compliance is a priority, he says.

Visit FundFire to read the original article [paid subscription]: Ackman Hedge Fund Hires Federal Prosecutor By Maureen Brody

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Financial Services Market Data Report for 2014

Posted on February 9th, 2015 by Kristy Wright Skeehan

JWMC-2014-Market-Data JW Michaels & Co. has released its 2014 Financial Services Market Data Report. The data appearing in this compensation report were collected by comparing successful placements made by JW Michaels during 2014. The report presents compensations grouped by size and type of firm as well as by job title.

The data represent total compensation for various executive positions in the compliance, legal, risk, accounting and finance, and information technology areas. JW Michaels compiled this information based on completed placements made by the company in 2014 at its offices in New York City, New Jersey, Chicago, Houston, and Boston.

Read more on “Financial Services Market Data Report for 2014″ »

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Managing Partner Jason Wachtel Discusses Ex-US Prosecutor’s Move To Hedge Fund

Posted on February 6th, 2015 by Kristy Wright Skeehan

New York Times DealbookToday’s New York Times’ DealBook reports the recent move of Jenna Dabbs from the US Attorney’s office in Manhattan to Pershing Square Capital Management, investor William A. Ackman’s $18 billion hedge fund. Dabbs will act as senior counsel, working on regulatory and compliance issues.

In the article, JW Michaels managing partner Jason Wachtel discussed the growing trend of seasoned prosecutors moving to hedge funds and private equity firms:

“An added perk of bringing in a former prosecutor is that it carries a good deal of gravitas with investors — especially the big public pension plans that sink a lot money into hedge funds and private firms,”

said Jason Wachtel, a managing partner with JW Michaels & Company, a recruitment firm that specializes in hiring compliance officers and lawyers for hedge funds and private equity firms.

“It sends a clear message to employees and regulators that the fund takes their compliance program seriously,” Mr. Wachtel said.

You can read the full article by Matthew Goldstein here: http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2015/02/06/ex-u-s-prosecutor-dabbs-joins-ackmans-pershing-square/?_r=0

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Managing Partner Jason Wachtel Discusses Transparency and Compliance

Posted on February 6th, 2015 by Kristy Wright Skeehan

transparencyFinancial Times’ FundFire writer Laura Suter spoke with Jason Wachtel,managing partner at JW Michaels & Co about the recent trend in alternatives firms filling compliance departments with U.S. attorney’s office and Securities and Exchange Commission(SEC) alumni.

“By hiring someone who was a prosecutor and worked on significant cases, it sends a clear message to the investor base that [the manager is] really serious about compliance and transparency, and that investors don’t need to worry they are not going to be the next firm on the cover of a magazine saying ’we’re a Ponzi scheme’,” says Jason Wachtel, managing partner at JW Michaels & Co, an executive search firm.

“Investors really like that, in fact it’s like a tool to get more dollars, when managers are doing the roadshow they are not just talking about performance, but that they hired someone from the U.S. attorney’s office,” he says.

One stumbling block can be a mismatch in salary expectations, warns Wachtel.

Read the full article titled “Alts Shops Raid SEC, Attorney’s Office for Compliance Hires” by Laura Suter (paid subscription)

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High Profile Exam Priority for FINRA and the SEC | Cybersecurity

Posted on January 22nd, 2015 by Mitch Avnet

cybersecurity riskEarlier this month, FINRA and the SEC issued their exam priorities for 2015. Both agencies continue to pinpoint cybersecurity as a top priority for 2015. Although these priority letters serve as a “roadmap” highlighting areas of regulatory focus during the coming year, most firms continue to struggle in terms of how they should conduct their internal Cybersecurity Risk Assessments and evidence their diligence and vigilance with respect to this high profile industry risk.

In the wake of the many highly publicized data-breaches in 2014, our clients have reached out to us for advice and guidance in an effort to increase the overall awareness of Cybersecurity risk within their respective organizations. Many of these clients are seeking comprehensive training and a robust framework and methodology to conduct Cybersecurity Risk Assessments on a targeted and/or enterprise basis.
Read more on “High Profile Exam Priority for FINRA and the SEC | Cybersecurity” »

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Intellectual Property Rights for Entrepreneurs

Posted on January 20th, 2015 by Kristy Wright Skeehan

Q: What precautions do startups need to take to protect their intellectual property?

intellectual-propertyAs an entrepreneur, you may be unclear on how and when to file to protect your ideas and designs. This information is intended to help you get started.

Q: What is considered intellectual property and how is it protected?

Intangible assets created by your company may fall under the category of intellectual property. There are three legal means to protect this property: trademarks, copyrights, and patents.

Trademarks distinguish your business from others and can include logos, slogans, taglines, and packaging. They are usually specific only to your field or business industry.

Copyrights cover creative literary and artistic work such as written papers, research, photographs, and music. You can also copyright technical drawings and database contents.

Patents are for inventions, such as new product designs. This includes not only physical devices, but also processes, such as business systems.
Read more on “Intellectual Property Rights for Entrepreneurs” »

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FINRA 2015 Priorities For Broker-Dealers

Posted on January 9th, 2015 by Elin Cherry

Now that You’ve Seen FINRA’s Exam Priorities – How About Some Practical Guidance?

Download FINRA 2015On January 6, 2015 FINRA published its 10th annual Regulatory and Examinations Letter.

Although 17 pages and dense, when broken down it is a roadmap for broker-dealers as to actions they can take now to reduce regulatory risk in 2015. Most broker-dealers can address many of the recommendations with ease.

This article is not a summary of the letter; instead it is a guide to assist broker-dealers in addressing topics raised. A good practice for Chief Compliance Officers (“CCOs”) is to perform a gap analysis of the topics discussed vis-à-vis their firms’ current practices, and begin addressing gaps identified immediately.

Several themes emerged, and Compliance Departments should ensure their programs are appropriately weighted towards these themes. Themes included: conflicts of interest, improved and increased surveillance, supervision, review of new products and continuous monitoring of existing products.

Read more on “FINRA 2015 Priorities For Broker-Dealers” »

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The 2015 Affordable Care Act

Posted on December 16th, 2014 by Greg DiFalco

Health Insurance Updates for Employers and Employees

Putting politics and rhetoric aside, tis the season to prepare for the new 2015 Affordable Care Act requirements.

For Employers

Affordable Health Care On January 1, 2015, employers with 100 or more full-time equivalent employees will be required to provide qualified health care. Businesses within this size category must offer benefits to at least 70% of employees by 2015 and to at least 95% of employees by 2016.

Companies with between 50 and 99 full-time equivalent employees are encouraged to meet the 2015 requirements of the Affordable Care Act, but compliance for companies that fall within this employee range will not be mandatory until 2016.

Employers have specific fiduciary health care responsibilities to their employees. The cost of affordable care can be no more than 9.5% of an employee’s yearly household income. Health plans meet the minimum qualifying value if its benefits cover at least 60% of medical services. Noncompliance results in a $2,000 fee per employee (with the first 30 employees fee exempt).

Read more on “The 2015 Affordable Care Act” »

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