The Fixed Income Investor Network set out in 2020 with a calendar of networking events for its membership to have the opportunity to connect and learn from other investor members, having several events scheduled around the US and Asia throughout 2020. These activities were to be the core of the Association’s 2020 activities while working to develop education initiatives and other programs for the membership in the longer term.
With the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic escalating back in March, it became clear that networking events would not be possible for an indeterminate amount of time. The Association necessarily had to change course to adapt to the new environment while the industry was grappling with the effects of the pandemic. Stay at home orders meant everyone, everywhere, was going to have to adapt to working in a virtual world.
While in person networking activities would take a back seat in the near term, other needs quickly emerged, especially with policy and regulatory actions coming from Washington to address the economic impacts of the outbreak, many of which were deemed detrimental to investors. It became apparent that many asset classes in structured finance remain largely misunderstood by key regulator and policy makers. With support from many members,
FIIN’s Executive Committee shifted the association’s priorities to emphasize investor-centric advocacy and education activities to better serve the buy-side community.
In many respects, advocacy and education are closely linked. On one hand, advocacy can take the form of directly influencing policy makers and regulators through formal comment letter submissions. On the other hand, education activities may be thought of as a form of ‘soft advocacy’ which may serve to influence policy and regulatory bodies by making them better informed. Recognizing this inherent connection, the FIIN Board of Directors initiated the process to form the Editorial Review Committee and the Education Committee by appointing the committee Chairs; Vince Fiorillo and Ann Rutledge respectively. In addition, both were appointed to the Board of Directors, with Ann Rutledge serving as Senior Advisor on Education and Vince Fiorillo serving as Senior Advisor on Advocacy. (see Press Release)
Educational activities are underway with a series of webinars forthcoming hosted by Ann Rutledge and empaneled with FIIN members and industry leaders. Webinars will be a regular feature for FIIN members in the coming months. The Committee will also be working on formal educational programs that will be geared toward the demands of the investor.
On the Advocacy front, Vince Fiorillo and the Editorial Review Committee are tasked with considering policy issues that face the investor community. The Association is forming several member Task Forces and the Committee will work with them anytime they discover a policy or regulatory concern that impacts the buy side and FIIN is positioned to put forth their point of view. (see FIIN Requests Extension to DOL Rule Proposal Comment Period)
Finally, FIIN will be launching a new website in September to facilitate communication about the Association’s activities and member benefits. We will continue regular monthly member updates via email, but please monitor the website frequently for the most current information once the website launch is announced.
We welcome member input and feedback, so please do not hesitate to contact us at David.firstname.lastname@example.org