The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority has censured and fined Piper ­Jaffray & Co. $700,000 for failing to retain about 4.3 million e-mails over a six-year period and for not alerting FINRA that it was having problems with its e-mail retention and retrieval.

FINRA announced the action yesterday, stating in an enforcement document that it stemmed from an investigation of an employee whose e-mails did not include one dated Dec. 7, 2004, that the authority’s investigators already had in paper form. After further inquiry, FINRA found the e-mail problems existed throughout the firm from November 2002 through December 2008.

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