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In an effort to reduce the financial pressure on smaller investment dealers, the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) is pushing back the collection of its fees.

The self-regulatory organization (SRO), which ordinarily begins collecting fees in July and August, won’t start collecting from small and mid-size dealers until October.

The relief will apply to about 90% of dealers. Only the large firms, which pay annual fees of over $500,000, will be expected to pay their fees on the usual schedule.

The smallest firms, which pay $22,500 in annual fees, will now pay their SRO fees in two instalments, due in October 2020 and January 2021, instead of four instalments that start in July.

For mid-size firms, their first $22,500 in fees will be paid on the same schedule as the small firms. For any excess fees over and above the minimum, the charges for the first and second quarter will be due in July and August, and the third and fourth quarter will be due in October and January.

Additionally, IIROC has cut the premiums charged to higher-risk firms to zero for this fiscal year.

“We have significantly increased our monitoring of all [dealers] so it is no longer appropriate to focus on individual firms which previously required relatively more monitoring,” IIROC said in its notice.

IIROC said that these measures “are intended to provide the amount of relief we can reasonably offer to those members to whom we believe the relief will be most meaningful.”

Most dealers will benefit from the deferrals, with the smallest firms benefiting the most, the SRO said.

IIROC also noted that it will be setting its fees for fiscal 2021 in June, and will announce them in early July.