Investor Rights Clinic Weighs In On Proposed Rules Regarding the Financial Exploitation of Seniors

By Neda Ghomeshi On November 30, 2015, the Investor Rights Clinic (IRC) submitted a comment letter to FINRA in regard to Regulatory Notice 15-37. The Regulatory Notice sought comments on proposed rules to address the financial exploitation of seniors and other vulnerable adults. The notice proposed amendments to Rule 4512, Customer Account Information, which would [&hellip

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Do you have a Transfer on Death Plan for Your Brokerage Assets?

By Chelsea Healey Estate planning can be difficult for many people simply because it requires a person to contemplate their own mortality. When people begin the estate planning process, they mainly create wills or trusts, name their life insurance beneficiaries, and sign advanced medical directives. As such, individual brokerage account assets are often overlooked in [&hellip

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The New Pump-and-Dump: Same Scam, Different Technology

By Dillon McColgan On September 2, 2015, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued an Investor Alert to warn investors of the new approach fraudsters are using to conduct a classic market manipulation scam — the pump-and-dump. Essentially, a pump-and-dump scam involves the relentless promotion of a particular stock to create an artificial interest, which [&hellip

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Department of Labor’s Proposal Aims to Protect Retirement Investors

By Jim Sullivan Do you trust your investment broker when he or she recommends a stock, bond, or mutual fund for your retirement account? How about when it comes to those fee-heavy and complex products like variable annuities or variable life insurance policies? Surely your broker has your best interests in mind. Think again. Though [&hellip

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Who Will Decide the Fate of Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis?

By Jacqueline Aleman Puerto Rico and its state-owned agencies have amassed an estimated $70 billion of debt since 2006. That’s four times the debt that forced Detroit into bankruptcy two years ago. A bad combination of rising debt, slow economy, and decreasing population has pushed yields on Puerto Rico debt above those of Greece. The [&hellip

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New FINRA Senior Help Line

By Christopher Palomo This year FINRA proudly launched its first ever help line for seniors. The helpline is a source of free information and is FINRA’s latest effort in protecting investor rights. The program is designed to address the unique needs of one of the fastest growing communities of investors – senior citizens. With an [&hellip

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The Investor Rights Clinic Sends FINRA Dispute Resolution Task Force Letter Proposing Changes to Benefit Small Claim Investors

FINRA provides the largest forum for the resolution of disputes between investors and their brokers. Indeed, because nearly all brokerage firms in the U.S. have included a pre-dispute arbitration provision in the agreements with their customers, individuals really have no choice but to pursue their claims in arbitration. In an effort to improve the transparency, [&hellip

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FINRA Changes Rules to Address Perceived Investor-Sided Bias of Public Arbitrators

By Ranon Altman On February 26, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) approved the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (“FINRA”) proposed amendment to FINRA Rules 12100(p) and 12100(u), which define “non-public” and “public” arbitrators. FINRA arbitrators are decision makers that hear opposing sides of disputes, study the evidence, and render final decisions. Generally, public arbitrators [&hellip

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The Dangers of Affinity Fraud

By Kelsey Paine Between 2005 and 2012, according to SEC allegations, investment manager George Elia met with South Florida residents at expensive Fort Lauderdale restaurants to persuade them to invest millions in private equity funds that purported to buy and sell stock in public companies. In reality, these funds were owned by Elia, who used the [&hellip

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Purchasing Stock in the Newest Fads Can Often Result in Pump-and-Dump Devastation

By Ali Levenson On December 16, 2014, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) suspended trading of securities of Las Vegas electronic cigarette company American Heritage International, Inc. (“AHII”). The SEC cited to concerns regarding potentially manipulative activity related to AHII common stock. The “potentially manipulative activity” was prompted by a series of unsolicited “robo” [&hellip

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