FINRA has fined and suspended a former Edward Jones & Co. broker in Kansas who attempted to settle a customer complaint on his own, according to a settlement letter and Advisor Hub.
“Topeka-based broker Michael A. Erwin allegedly wrote a $2,500 check out of pocket to resolve a complaint from a customer who claimed she lost money after he failed to close an account in time as the market was tanking in March. The customer had instructed Erwin to close her account by March 10, but he did not close the account until March 17, according to the settlement.”
Finra imposed a 10-day suspension and $2,500 fine against Erwin for violating its ‘catch-all’ Rule 2010, which requires brokers to act with “high standards of commercial honor,” according to a letter of acceptance, waiver and consent issued by Finra.
Erwin, who has been registered since June as a broker and investment advisor with Madison Avenue Securities, according to BrokerCheck, could not immediately be reached for comment.
Finra last year imposed a $5,000 fine and 15-day suspension against a former Morgan Stanley broker in California who made an off-the-books settlement over an investment recommendation that had gone awry.
In this case, Edward Jones was aware of the customer complaint but did not know about the settlement, according to the AWC.
Jones discharged Erwin on April 8 over concerns that he “attempted to resolve a customer complaint without the firm’s knowledge.
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