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IIROC Regulatory Entity

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The Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) is an independent self-regulatory organization within Canada. The regulation entity oversees all dealings in Canadian debt and equity markets by investment dealers.

While maintaining efficient and competitive capital markets, the IIROC sets high-quality standards for regulation.

The IIROC regulates investment industry standards, protects investors, and strengthens market integration entities carrying out specific regulatory responsibilities in several ways.

First, the entity sets and enforces the rules regarding dealer firms’ proficiency, business, and financial conduct and their registered employees.

Also, IIROC sets and enforces market integrity rules regarding trading activity on equity marketplaces of Canada. Being a self-regulatory organization, IIROC must act honestly, transparently, and fairly to fulfil its mandate.

Understanding the IIROC

Associated with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in the United States, Canada’s Investment Industry Regulatory Organization (IIROC) serves as a self-regulatory organization.

IIROC international body was established n 2008 to promote fair and orderly markets within the country. It regulates all securities-related activity involving brokers, agents, and financial advisors.


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What IIROC does

  • IIROC establishes high standards for the investment industry and strict regulatory rules.
  • It assesses the character and status of all investment advisors that IIROC-regulated firms employ. Also, IIROC performs a background check on their training, educational courses, and programs.
  • It sets minimum capital requirements for firms according to the nature and volume of the business and conducts financial compliance reviews. Further, it prevents firms from excessively leveraging and engaging in risky business practices that can lead to failure. IIROC-regulated firms participate in the Canadian Investor Protection Fund, which safeguards individual investors if a firm goes bankrupt.
  • Also, the IIROC assesses how firms carry out business conduct compliance reviews. For example, it determines if they are installing procedures to supervise the handling of clients’ accounts and whether advice and transactions reflect the client’s needs and instructions appropriately.
  • According to the IIROC, approved advisors must have to follow sustainability rules. Also, the firms must comply with the “know your client” rule. It is possible by being familiar with the client’s financial situation, investment needs, objectives, and risk tolerance.
  • IIROC regulation entity verifies the trade-desk procedures of trading firms by conducting compliance reviews. Moreover, a review verifies whether trade-desk procedures adhere to the Universal Market Integrity Rules (UMIR) and provincial securities laws.
  • Through market surveillance and trade review, the entity ensures that trades are executed following UMIR and applicable provincial securities laws.
  • The agency investigates possible dealer misconduct. In addition, it can bring disciplinary proceedings, which may result in penalties. These penalties include fines, suspensions, permanent bans, and terminations for individuals and firms. The fines and settlements are added to IIROC’s restriction funds. Additionally, the IIROC uses these funds to address emerging regulatory issues for investor and industry education. Also, IIROC uses these funds for other purposes that are specified in Recognition orders.


The vision of their self-regulatory model is to demonstrate how they serve the public interests by

  • Processing and using robust, appropriate tools to inspire confidence and prevent wrongdoing.
  • Increasing the efficiency of securities regulation in Canada.
  • Being a recognized, trustworthy, respected, and valued partner by our stakeholders.
  • Being an innovative securities regulator
  • Fostering an environment to create high-quality employee retention and attraction.


Action with integrity

The IIROC ethically conducts itself following the highest level of fairness and professionalism.


The IIROC ensures the action in a timely, diligent and responsive manner.


While the IIROC anticipates and collaborates to meet the challenges of a constantly changing environment, the entity is open to new ideas. Hence, it works while being proactive and innovative.

Market volatility

In addition to monitoring the equity and debt markets to detect manipulative practices and other breaches of the market rules, IIROC also monitors foreign exchange markets. In addition, market volatility controls and halt improve investors’ confidence and increase market integrity.

IIROC approved Individuals categories

The IIROC refers to the term “advisor” to several official regulatory approval categories. These individual approval categories include:

Registered Representative (RR)

The IIROC regulates the Registered Representative to perform several functions. First, an investment dealer or employee offers services to make securities, options, and futures contracts/fixed income derivatives trades and financial advice to the general public in Canada.

Investment representative (IR)

The investment Representative is also authorized by IIROC to trade in but not advise on securities, futures contracts, or options on futures contracts.

Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada checks advisors’ backgrounds. It ensures that they have proper training before allowing them to work in IIROC-regulated firms. IIROC’s registration department performs a gatekeeping function by analyzing advisors’ credentials, qualifications, and financial backgrounds upon registration.

IIROC ensures that they have the skills and experience required for the position they are applying for. IIROC’s gatekeeping program is one way it promotes high industry standards and protects investors at the same time.

Future outlook

In the future, IIROC hopes to work more closely with the CSA and the MFDA to improve the self-regulation framework. It will help the entity work more efficiently and effectively, which ultimately leads to better outcomes for Canadians. Additionally, the IIROC team is committed to protecting investors and promoting a healthy capital market across Canada through enforcement. The IIROC’s enforcement members are vigilant in pursuing causes to prevent future violations and improve standards and practices

Bottom line

The Financial Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in the United States is similar to Canada’s Investment Industry Regulatory Organization. However, for the IIROC to operate effectively, it must be recognized by the provincial and territorial securities commissions.

These commissions comprise the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA). IIROC is also responsible for overseeing the fair and orderly conduct of financial markets within the country and regulating all securities transactions within the country. In addition, IIROC may impose fines as part of its quasi-judicial role.

Additionally, it can suspend members and take other disciplinary actions in the Canadian securities and trading markets. In addition, IIROC acts as a regulator and enforces various regulations. It also screens investment advisors, performs financial compliance reviews, and sets minimum standards.

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