So far this year, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's fines and enforcement activities have exceeded those in the comparable periods of the past three years. But Bradley Bennett, enforcement chief at FINRA, said the group's effectiveness should not be measured by such statistics. He estimated that as much as 80% of FINRA's work involves holding brokers accountable for following basic rules. "People don't always talk about them much, but these are important cases," Bennett said. "These are the basic lying, cheating and stealing cases."

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