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Articles Posted in Alternative Investments

Broker-Dealers Collectively Will Pay $550K Fine and Over $3.3M in Restitution 

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has fined and censured three brokerage firms after finding that they failed to supervise recommendations of the LJM Preservation and Growth Fund (LJMIX, LJMCX, LJMAX) and did not conduct the proper due diligence into the alternative mutual fund:

  • Cambridge Investment Services will pay a $400K fine plus more than $3M in restitution 

Special Purpose Acquisition Companies Can Lead To Losses, High Fees

If you are an investor whose broker recommended that you invest in a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) and you have suffered losses on your investment, you should contact our investment fraud attorneys at Shepherd Smith Edwards and Kantas (SSEK Law Firm at investorlawyers.com). 

SPACs grew even more popular in 2020 in the wake of COVID-19. Although they can be profitable for those who start one, they’ve also proven to be risky and can result in losses for investors. Contact SSEK Law Firm today to request your free, no-obligation consultation.

SEC Requested Monitor to Protect GPB Fund Investors 

In a letter dated March 3rd, 2021, to all investors of its limited partnerships, CFO and interim CEO of GPB Capital Holdings, Rob Chmiel, notified investors that the firm has consented to a court-appointed independent monitor by the SEC to run the company and oversee its assets.

The regulator said it wanted to protect GPB Fund investors from further financial harm in the wake of the Ponzi fraud charges. 

Wealth Management Firm Also May Have Sold ARC NYC REIT, NorthstarHealthcare Income REITs, and Other Illiquid Securities 

Wealth management solutions holding company, Atria Wealth Solutions, Inc. recently announced that it is acquiring SFC Securities, which is a brokerage firm based in Fresno, California. Also included in the acquisition will be SCF Investment Advisors, Inc. and SCF Marketing, Inc. The deal is expected to be finalized by the middle of 2021. 

Our alternative investment fraud lawyers at Shepherd Smith Edwards and Kantas (SSEK Law Firm at investorlawyers.com) are currently investigating SFC Securities over its sale of:  

Infinity Q Capital Management Founder May Have Incorrectly Valued Certain Fund Assets

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has approved the suspension of redemptions on the $1.8B Infinity Q Diversified Alpha Investor Fund (IQDAX). This includes postponing redemption date payments past seven days.

The move comes in the wake of allegations that Infinity Q Capital Management CIO and founder, James Velissaris, may have placed the incorrect value on certain complex derivatives in the open-ended mutual fund. 

Financial Advisor in Ludlow, Massachusetts is Named in Two Pending Customer Disputes

Joseph Anthony Leonczyk, a Commonwealth Financial Network registered representative, is currently named in two pending customer disputes in which the claimants allege that he unsuitably recommended that they invest in FS Energy and Power Fund (FSEP),  FS KKR Capital Corp. (FSK), and other alternative investments. The claimants are seeking $65K and $100K, respectively, for their losses.

FS Energy and Power and FS KKR Capital investors have both suffered significant losses. FS KKR Capital underwent a reverse split last year that caused its value to drop. FS Energy and Power stopping distributions while possibly heading for bankruptcy. Its latest share price on the secondary market is $1/share.

Ex-LPL Broker Marketed Non-Traded Investments To Mississippi Retiree 

A retired investor has filed a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration claim against LPL Financial and its former broker, Tamber King Proctor, seeking up to $100K in damages. 

The claimant contends that LPL Financial and Proctor should have never recommended that he invest in the business development company (BDC), FS Energy & Power Fund (FSEP), and the Northstar Healthcare Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT). 

Proprietary, Non-Traded Oil, Gas and Energy Investments Plunged  In Value

If your David Lerner Associates broker recommended and sold you any of the firm’s proprietary non-traded oil and gas investments and you sustained significant losses, you may have grounds for an investor fraud claim for damages. 

The privately-held broker-dealer exclusively sold investments and mutual funds to customers in its Spirit of America Energy Fund (NASDAQ: SOAEX), as well as its Energy 11 LP and Energy Resources 12 LP. 

Risky, Illiquid Business Development Company Was Not Suitable for Many Investors

If you are someone who invested in the Sierra Income Corporation, you may have lost money. This business development company (BDC) is a non-traded investment. 

Earlier this year, Sierra Income suffered losses after its announced merger with Medley Capital Corp. and Medley Management Inc. was terminated because of the economic uncertainty caused by COVID-19. Not long after that, the company announced that it was suspending monthly redistributions.

Investor Contends Insigneo Securities Broker Unsuitably Handled Account

A former customer of Felipe Henao Vargas, an Insigneo Securities stockbroker, is pursuing a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration claim against the brokerage firm for $1.3M in damages related to the iPath Series B S & P 500 Short Term Futures ETN (VXX). Henao is also a registered investment advisor with Global Investor Advisory Services, LLC in Miami, Florida. 

The investor said that Henao had placed a short-term trade for 20,000 of the Barclays exchange-traded note (ETN) in late February 2020 in the investor’s account and then made another trade a few weeks later to cover the short. The claimant reportedly wrote an email expressing concerns over the brokerage account’s performance, which had depreciated in value, and Henao’s lack of communication.

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