Merrill terminated 38-year Birmingham, Alabama based Advisor after settling a customer claim for $4.25 million, according to Advisor Hub and FINRA Brokercheck.

Merrill fired the advisor for “conduct including making an unsuitable investment strategy recommendation and misrepresentation to a client” tied to an options investment and also for failing “to follow Firm standards related to business communications,” according to BrokerCheck.

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The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority hired an “independent” law firm to conduct a review of its arbitrator selection procedures after a Judge rebukes FIRNA in an order vacating a Wells Fargo award in a controversial case, according to FINRA.

Finra, whom denied any flaw in its process, hired the law firm of Lowenstein Sandler after a scathing order to vacate a Wells Fargo award.  The Judge had said Finra and Wells Fargo’s lawyer appeared to have a secret agreement to strike potential arbitrators from a neutral list and questioned the fairness of the process.

The concerns were reiterated by the Public Investors Advocate Bar Association, which called for “an immediate investigation” by the Securities and Exchange Commission and hearings in Congress, and by Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) in a February 10 letter.

According to Advisor Hub, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority has censured and imposed a $950,000 fine on Merrill Lynch Wealth Management for allegations that they engaged in ignoring flaws in its fraud detection systems allowed for two of their brokers to steal $6 million from clients.

“Merrill’s systems did not properly screen Automated Clearing House transfers from customers’ accounts to detect when one of its registered representatives was the beneficiary of those transfers,” FINRA said. Merrill’s internal fraud-detection system was only “designed to detect fraud by third parties” or “persons other than its own brokers,” it continued.

cropped-High-Res-TA-2018-2019-284x300According to Advisor Hub and FINRA Website, in a decision overturning an arbitration award, a Georgia state court judge vacated an Arbitration decision in which Wells Fargo successfully beat an investor’s $1.7 million damage claims over investment losses.

According to the Order, Judge Belinda E. Edwards based her ruling in part on grounds that the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority administrators had allowed Wells Fargo and an outside lawyer to “manipulate” the arbitrator selection process. The article in Advisor Hub notes that “A Finra dispute resolution director improperly granted Wells Fargo’s request to strike two arbitrators, including one from a computer-generated “neutral” list, as part of an unwritten side agreement between the regulator and Wells’ lawyer.”

“Permitting one lawyer to secretly red line the neutral list makes the list anything but neutral, and calls into question the entire fairness of the arbitral forum,” Judge Edwards wrote in the January 25 ruling.

Miller Stern Lawyers is currently investigating claims against J.P. Morgan. According to Advisor Hub and industry records, J.P. Morgan Advisors was ordered to pay $4 million in damages to a former client in their San Francisco office.

Industry records confirms that Lacey Winston Keath alleged unsuitability in filings against J.P. Morgan’s traditional brokerage unit in high-risk equities and junk bonds–without authorization, according to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority award.

A J.P. Morgan spokeswoman declined to comment on the arbitration outcome or underlying dispute.

cropped-High-Res-TA-2018-2019-284x300According to Advisor Hub and other industry news sources the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority levied sanctions against Merrill Lynch and two of its brokers over allegedly early rollovers of Unit Investment Trusts.

Miller Stern Lawyers is currently investigating matters pertaining to early rollovers of Unit Investment Trusts and other such practices. According to the reports from Finra, it finalized its sanctions against Merrill, and accepted a settlement letter from a 30-year Merrill veteran in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and another from a 35-year industry veteran in Charlotte, North Carolina.

According to the regulators information, including CRD information, both the brokers, Kelly Wayne Feehrer in Tennessee and Scott R. Mathews, who joined Merrill in 2009, agreed to three-month suspensions and $5,000 in fines for allegedly unsuitable UIT switch recommendations.

Bull BearMiller Stern Lawyers – 410-Law-Firm is currently investigating for individuals who may be victims of, and suffered damages and losses, due to stock market and financial abuses such fraud, mutual fund abuses, unsuitable mutual fund investments, failure to supervise, breach of fiduciary duty, overcharging , and unauthorized trading and elder abuse, and past clients of Ignacio Erhart Del Campo CRD#6084596, for, among other things, unauthorized trading and discretionary trading without written authority.

FINRA has recently fined and suspended a broker for trading in one of his customer’s non-discretionary accounts for five-and-a-half years without the customers written permission, however the worst of errors was his failure to realize that the client had been dead for two of those years, according to Advisor Hub.

Ignacio Erhart Del Campo CRD#6084596, who worked at Miami-based independent broker Insigneo Securities and predecessor firm Northeast Securities in Montevideo, Uruguay, agreed to a conditional $7,500 fine and reimbursement to the client’s estate of $19,189 for losses and commissions, along with a two-month suspension from the brokerage industry, according to a letter of acceptance, waiver and consent Finra’s enforcement department accepted on Wednesday, according to FINRA.

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Bull BearMiller Stern Lawyers – 410-Law-Firm is currently investigating for individuals who may be victims of, and suffered damages and losses, due to stock market and financial abuses such fraud, mutual fund abuses, unsuitable mutual fund investments, failure to supervise, breach of fiduciary duty, overcharging , and unauthorized trading and elder abuse, and past clients of Marcus Boggs, for, among other things, fraud.

A former Merrill Lynch broker in Chicago pleaded guilty to wire fraud on Friday, admitting he stole more than $3 million from multiple clients for personal expenses, including luxury hotel stays and expensive meals, according to public documents.

Marcus Boggs, CRD#5055667, who spent his entire 12-year brokerage career with Merrill, entered the plea during a virtual hearing before U.S. District Judge Mary M. Rowland in the Northern District of Illinois. He faces a maximum sentence of 20 years for wire fraud, according to the agreement.

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Bull BearMiller Stern Lawyers – 410-Law-Firm is currently investigating for individuals who may be victims of, and suffered damages and losses, due to stock market and financial abuses such fraud, mutual fund abuses, unsuitable mutual fund investments, failure to supervise, breach of fiduciary duty, overcharging , and unauthorized trading and elder abuse, and past clients of Trevor Rahn, for, among other things, failing to conduct the necessary reasonable diligence to understand the cost implications of a recommended average pricing investment strategy and, as a result, lacked a reasonable basis to recommend the strategy to his customers..

FINRA has fined and suspended a former J.P. Morgan Securities broker in Los Angeles who was previously fired over “improper” trading and whose transactions in one elderly client’s account were highlighted in two articles in “The New York Times.”, according to FINRA documents.

Trevor Rahn CRD#: 2196155, a 26-year brokerage industry veteran, agreed to an 18-month suspension and $10,000 fine over allegations that he structured trades to generate unnecessary commissions and made a number of unauthorized trades in client accounts from January 2014 to September 2018, according to FINRA documents.

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