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Articles Posted in Securities Fraud

Big Banks Anticipate Losses in the Billions 

Last week, Archegos Capital Management, the $10 billion hedge fund founded by Bill Hwang, was forced to liquidate over $20 billion in equities including millions of shares in ViacomCBS, media company Discovery, and a number of Chinese tech companies. 

The move came after Archegos, which had borrowed on margin while using derivatives, was met with demands by banks to post greater collateral so as to minimize losses. 

Settlement in FINRA Case Involves Repaying Nearly $44K to Affected Customers 

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has ordered Triad Advisors to pay a $150K fine for not adequately supervising both short-term trades involving Class A shares of mutual funds and variable annuity exchanges. The self-regulatory organization (SRO) also accused the Atlanta-headquartered broker-dealer of not making timely disclosures involving customer complaints and arbitration.

Triad Advisors, which is an Advisor Group network brokerage firm, consented to repay clients that were affected nearly $44k as part of its settlement for this case. It is not, however, denying or admitting to FINRA’s findings.

Wallingford, Connecticut Investment Advisor Named in Four Pending FINRA Arbitration Cases 

If you suffered investment losses while working with Woodbury Financial Services broker, Robert Scott Ginsberg, please contact Shepherd Smith Edwards and Kantas (SSEK Law Firm at investorlawyers.com). The Woodbury Financial investment advisor, who is based in Wallingford, Connecticut, is named in four pending customer disputes. 

He has been in the securities industry for 12 years. Prior to working for Woodbury Financial Services in 2016, where he is also a registered investment advisor, Ginsberg was a registered representative for Investors Capital Corp. and Investors Capital Advisory. 

SEC’s Regulation BI May Not Be Protecting Investors The Way They Think 

It has been nearly seven months since the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest (BI), a rule mandating that brokers NOT market themselves as financial advisors unless they actually are dually registered to be one, went into effect. The aim of this distinction is to let investors know whether they are working with someone who is bound to act in their best interests or not.  

While brokers are supposed only to recommend financial products to customers that are suitable for them, this recommendation can also be based on what product will earn them the highest commission. This potential conflict of interest can be financially disadvantageous to an investor.

FINRA Suspends Cincinnati, Ohio Financial Advisor  

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has suspended former Ameriprise (AMP) stockbroker, Angel W. Bardeche, for nine months over allegations that she engaged in unsuitable mutual fund switches over a two-year period that earned her $450K in commissions. 

The self-regulatory organization (SRO) also contends that the ex-Ameriprise Financial broker made 109 trades in eight non-discretionary customer accounts without authorization. Bardeche will pay a $10K fine and $5K in disgorgement.

California Stockbroker Accused Of Unsuitability & Misrepresentations

David Omori Bibo, a Western International Securities, Inc. registered representative is named in two pending customer disputes collectively seeking $1.8M in damages. The San Jose broker has been part of the industry for 25 years. He has seven disclosures on his BrokerCheck record.

Our California securities fraud lawyers are looking into investor claims involving Western International Securities broker, David Bibo, or any other registered representative from the firm. Contact Shepherd Smith Edwards and Kantas (SSEK Law Firm at investorlawyers.com) today so that we can help you determine whether you have grounds for a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration case to recover your losses.

Customers Claim That Northstar Financial Services Products Were Touted As Low Risk & Safe 

If you are an investor who suffered losses while investing in Northstar Financial Services products that were recommended to you by a SunTrust Investment Services stockbroker, please contact Shepherd Smith Edwards and Kantas (SSEK Law Firm investorlawyers.com) today so that we can help you explore your legal options. 

Unfortunately, there are financial advisors who may have marketed Northstar Financial Services’ investments as stable, safe, low risk, and liquid – like a CD or a money market account – even when that has proven to be far from the case.  Now, Northstar Financial Services is in bankruptcy and undergoing liquidation proceedings. It is very likely that investors have lost most of, if not their entire, investment.  

Lax Oversight Purportedly Allowed An LPL Broker to Continue Defrauding Customers in Ponzi Scam

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has fined LPL Financial Holdings (LPLA) $6.5M due to purported supervisory inadequacies related to recordkeeping, fingerprinting employees that were non-registered representatives, and its financial advisers’ consolidated reports. The self-regulatory organization (SRO) found that due to weak oversight of these consolidated reports, an ex-broker was enabled to continue committing a $5M Ponzi scheme. 

The former registered investment advisor, identified by Advisors Hub as ex-Norwalk, Connecticut broker James Thomas Booth,  pleaded guilty to securities fraud in November. He was sentenced to 42 months behind bars. Booth has been named in 36 customer disputes.  

FINRA Settlement Includes Restitution to More than 2,400 Customers

In an agreement reached with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Transamerica Financial Advisors consented to pay $8.8M over the unsuitable sales of mutual funds, variable annuities (VAs) and 529 savings plans to customers. 

$4.4M of this is a fine and $4.4M is restitution to about 2,400 customers who were financially harmed. The firm settled with FINRA but without denying or admitting to its findings. 

Broker-Dealer’s RIA Accused of Violating Fiduciary Duty 

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Voya Financial Advisors have arrived at a $22.9M settlement, including $13.9M in restitution and interest to customers that were harmed. Voya Financial Advisors is an independent brokerage firm that is run as both a broker-dealer and a registered investment advisor (RIA). 

As a brokerage firm, Voya Financial Advisors charges commissions.  As an RIA, it charges fees. The regulator contends that conflicts at Voya’s registered investment advisor arm caused the firm to violate and breach its fiduciary obligation to advisory clients. Voya’s RIA oversees nearly $16B in assets for customers. 

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