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WFG Investments Hit with $700,000 Fine for Due Diligence and Supervision Lapses

WFG Investments, Inc. of Dallas, Texas submitted a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent in which the firm consented to, but it did not admit to or deny, the described sanctions and the entry of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) findings that it failed to conduct appropriate due diligence and supervision with respect to a private placement offering and that a registered representative sold an investment away from the firm as an approved private securities transaction.

FINRA found that in various times between March 2007 and January 2014, “the Firm failed to commit the necessary time, attention and resources to an array of critical regulatory obligations related to its supervision of registered representatives.” Clients who invested in the private placement offering allegedly lost their entire investment. FINRA also found that WFG Investments failed to supervise its representatives, who allegedly recommended the sale of high risk equity and ETF purchases for a retired client with conservative risk tolerance. In addition, WFG Investments failed to supervise a representative’s private securities transactions. According to FINRA, the WFG representative allegedly structured and sold two funds that had substantial investments (exceeding the 50% limit) without investors’ knowledge. All private placement investors allegedly “lost 100% of their investments resulting from a related entity’s fraudulent business practices.” Consequently, WFG Investments was censured and fined $700,000 by FINRA.

Stockbrokers, financial advisors, and other financial industry professionals have been known to engage in many types of misconduct which violate industry rules and procedures. In order to protect investors from such misconduct, FINRA rules require brokerage firms to establish and implement a reasonable supervisory system. The implementation of the rules requires supervisors to monitor employees to ensure compliance with federal and state securities laws, securities industry rules and regulations, and the brokerage firm’s own policies and procedures, including ensuring that financial professionals are making suitable recommendations for investor clients. If broker dealers and their supervisors fail to establish and implement these protective measures, they may be held liable to investment account holders for losses flowing from the employees’ misconduct. As a result, investors who have suffered losses stemming from unauthorized securities transactions, unsuitable recommendations, or other misconduct by their broker or registered representative can bring forth claims to recover damages against broker dealers like WFG Investments, which have a duty to supervise its employees in order to prevent broker misconduct.

Have you suffered losses in your private placement offering? Did your broker dealer’s failure to supervise its registered representative contribute to your investment losses? If so, call Robert Pearce at the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A for a free consultation. Attorney Pearce is accepting clients with valid claims against WFG Investments and other financial professionals for failing to supervise its registered representatives who may have made unsuitable recommendations and/or engaged in other prohibited or unlawful misconduct.

The most important of investors’ rights is the right to be informed! This Investors’ Rights blog post is by the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., located in Boca Raton, Florida. For over 35 years, Attorney Pearce has tried, arbitrated, and mediated hundreds of disputes involving complex securities, commodities, and investment law issues. The lawyers at our law firm are devoted to protecting investors’ rights throughout the United States and internationally! Please post a comment, call (800) 732-2889, send Mr. Pearce an email at pearce@rwpearce.com, and/or visit our website at www.secatty.com for answers to any of your questions about this blog post and/or any related matter.