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Rep Barred for Churning

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced today that it has permanently barred Richard Adams, a former registered representative of Caldwell International Securities Corp., from the securities industry for churning customers’ accounts and other securities rule violations. Adams also failed to report a dozen unsatisfied judgments and liens on his U4 Registration Form as required by FINRA rules.

FINRA found that from July 2013 to June 2014, Adams excessively traded and churned the accounts of two customers generating more than $57,000 in commissions. At the same time, the excessive trading activity in these accounts resulted in over $37,000 in customer losses.

Brad Bennett, FINRA’s Executive Vice President and Chief of Enforcement, said, “A key element of retail investor protection is the aggressive pursuit of brokers who churn and excessively trade customer accounts. FINRA has no tolerance for brokers who place commissions ahead of what is suitable and appropriate for their customers.”

In settling this matter, Adams neither admitted nor denied the charges, but consented to the entry of FINRA’s findings.

Investors can obtain more information about, and the disciplinary record of, any FINRA-registered broker or brokerage firm by using FINRA’s BrokerCheck. FINRA makes BrokerCheck available at no charge. In 2014, members of the public used this service to conduct 18.9 million reviews of broker or firm records. Investors can access BrokerCheck at www.finra.org/brokercheck or by calling (800) 289-9999. Investors may find copies of this disciplinary action as well as other disciplinary documents in FINRA’s Disciplinary Actions Online database. Click here to read the full press release.

While this may be an extreme example it still illustrates why it is prudent to document transactions in client accounts, whether it be through notes from client meetings, calls, or simply showing how a trade is suitable for their current situation.

Additionally, it is extremely important to stay on top of your U4 information. There is a 30 day window to update your U4 for any reportable event. Not sure if something needs to be reported? Let us know, we are here to help.

About Red Oak Compliance Solutions

Red Oak Compliance Solutions is the global advertising review software of choice in the financial services industry. It is a comprehensive suite of SEC 17A-4 compliant features that are 100% books and records compliant and provides clients with 35% faster approvals and 70% fewer touches or better. We also offer Smart Review(SM), which solves for the storage and maintenance of disclosures, helping firms reduce risk, decrease review times, and increase the speed of distribution of marketing materials. Smart Registration(SM) automates the licensing and registration management process to help reduce regulatory risk and time spent on manual processes. Overall, Red Oak allows firms to minimize risk, reduce costs, and increase compliance review process effectiveness and efficiencies.