Articles Tagged with Pump and Dump Scheme

As part of concurrent settlements with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. (Oppenheimer) has admitted it is guilty and agreed to pay $20 million for engaging in unregistered sales of penny stocks.

According to the SEC Order, one Oppenheimer Financial Advisor and his immediate supervisor, an Oppenheimer Branch Office Manager, engaged in the sales of 2.5 billion shares of unregistered penny stocks for an investor customer. Those trades generated $12 million, of which Oppenheimer was paid $588,400 in commissions. The SEC Order states further that Oppenheimer personnel was aware of red flags indicative of illegal unregistered penny stock trades and failed to property follow up on those warning signs. Further, Oppenheimer failed to supervise its employees by failing to establish procedures to ensure its employees comply with Section 5 of the Securities Act. Continue Reading

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have issued an alert to warn investors of fraudulent penny stock scams touting what may essentially be stocks of dormant shell companies which have little to no business operations or non-cash assets and pose the threat of substantial financial losses for those who invest in them.

The SEC’s alert notes that fraudsters use dormant shell companies in what are known as pump-and-dump schemes. These schemes involve the buying of shares in the shell company, claiming the company to be a great investment opportunity, even hyping up the company with aggressive marketing and the announcing of new management or re-incorporation, possibly under a new name. All of these tactics are meant to “pump” the company stock back to life, thereby creating more trading and getting the stock prices to shoot up. Continue Reading