SEC Busts $350 Million Ponzi-like Scheme

The SEC (Securities Exchange Commission) announced today that it has obtained a court order to shut down a major investment operation worth approximately $345 million. According to the SEC complaint, the scheme involved more than 230 investors from the United States and was lead by Kevin B. Merrill and Cameron Jezierski.

Top 5 Tips for Good Financial Health

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, FINRA, has released some basic guidance for those of us who struggled to achieve financial wellness. Like the governmental guidelines for maintaining good health and ensuring longevity, the financial rules are as simple as they are hard to follow. Take a look.

Former Eagles Player and Goldman Sachs Banker Accused of Insider Trading

In a reversal of the typical story that grabs the headlines, former NFL linebacker Mychal Kendricks and former Goldman Sachs banker Damilare Sonoiki have been charged with insider trading over profits totally approximately $1.2 million. 

Phony Billionaire Connected to Ponzi Scheme

Financier Steve Stovanovich liked to play the big man. Over the past few years, he has pledged multimillionaire donations to the University of Chicago and institute named on his behalf. But as a recent investigation by the Chicago Maroon has revealed, Stovanovich may not possess the vast wealth he says he has.

PA Brokerage Ordered to Pay $1M in Damages

According to public records, Greensburg, Pennsylvania based brokerage firm, Trustmont Financial Group, Inc. was ordered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority to pay an aggrieved client more than $1 million in damages. 

FINRA Disciplinary Action Report August 2018

Each month, the agency that regulates the financial industry, FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), produces a detailed report that runs down all disciplinary actions recently taken against brokerage firms and brokers. We strongly encourage any investor who suspects their broker and/or broker-dealer of having lost them money on dubious terms to at least skim this report to see if you recognize any names, schemes, products, or securities.

Fiduciary Duty vs Suitability Standards

Confusion or ignorance over the professional standard of the care in the industry unfortunately leads to many investors losing many millions of dollars every year to financial advisors who are upholding one standard while investors think they are upholding another. Let us explain.

Partners Adam Green & Michael Schafle Named to Best Lawyers in America

Green & Schalfe is pleased to announce that partners Adam Green and Michael Schafle have once again been recognized by their peers for selection to the prestigious The Best Lawyers in America list. This honor is bestowed upon the top 5% of private practice attorneys nationwide, as judged by other attorneys.

Hybrid Reps Not Held to Highest Standard of Conduct - Yet.

Hybrid Reps Not Held to Highest Standard of Conduct - Yet.

According to a new study by securities industry watchdog, FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, the number of so-called "hybrid" brokers has exploded in recent years, now comprising 45% of all brokers. In this, the first ever snapshot of the industry's professional growth conducted by FINRA, the number of total broker-dealers has risen steadily over the past decade. Growth in hybrid reps, however, has easily outstripped growth in both of the discrete categories of broker and investment advisor.

All About Non-Traditional Index Funds

Traditional index funds track a market index - hence the name. That may be the S&P 500 or NASDAQ or a smaller segment of the market. Non-traditional index funds, on the other hands, track customized index in order to achieve greater performance than their traditional counterparts. Non-traditional funds may also use leverage, such that they return a multiple of one of these customized indexes, thus ratcheting up potential returns (and potential losses) to an even greater extent.

FINRA Disciplinary Action Report July 2018

Each month, the agency that regulates the financial industry, FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), produces a detailed report that runs down all disciplinary actions recently taken against brokerage firms and brokers. We strongly encourage any investor who suspects their broker and/or broker-dealer of having lost them money on dubious terms to at least skim this report to see if you recognize any names, schemes, products, or securities.

How Investors Recover Money Lost in Securities Fraud

Thousands of retail investors lose money every year due to broker misconduct or investment fraud. The amount they lose, if you consider the opportunity cost operating in many of these instances, easily runs into the several billions of dollars. In other words, the losses are staggering, and represent a huge drain on investor wealth and the smooth operating of our financial system. Incredibly, in spite of the enormous sums of money being lost by investors on an annual basis, very few of them know that they may be able to recover some of their losses from fraudsters. 

Do FINRA's Reforms Go Far Enough to Stop Bad Brokers?

FINRA has not only made it costlier for member-firms who hire bad brokers with a checkered past, but it also took over the duty of verifying that brokers provide accurate and truthful information on their employment history forms.

SEC Busts $102 Million Ponzi Scheme

According to the SEC's complaint, a group of financial managers and companies located in different regions of the country, including in New York, Florida, Texas, and Ohio, orchestrated what appears to a massive fraud to bilk unwitting investors out of millions of hard-earned dollars.

How to Run a Background Check on Your Stock Broker - The Right Way

What you may not know, however, is that there is a highly sophisticated system of record-keeping for financial industry professionals administered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), and those records are freely available to the public.