Customers File Dozens of Complaints Against Former Oppenheimer Broker Bennett Broad

shutterstock_128856874According to the BrokerCheck records kept by Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) broker Bennett Broad (Broad) has been the subject of an astonishing 28 customer complaints and one regulatory matter over the course of his career. Customers have filed complaints against Broad alleging securities law violations including that the broker made unsuitable investments, negligence, unauthorized trading, misrepresentations, and churning and excessive trading, among other claims. In total the customer complaints allege several million dollars in damages. In May 2015, FINRA sought to investigate Broad and his activities and requested that the broker provide the regulator with information. Broad failed to respond to FINRA’s requests and was consequently subject to an automatic bar from the industry. The details of FINRA’s requests and investigation is not available at this time.

Broad entered the securities industry in 1979. From March 2003 until April 2015, Broad was associated with Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. out of the firm’s Jenkintown, Pennsylvania office.

All advisers have a fundamental responsibility to deal fairly with investors including making suitable investment recommendations. In order to make suitable recommendations the broker must have a reasonable basis for recommending the product or security based upon the broker’s investigation of the investments properties including its benefits, risks, tax consequences, and other relevant factors. In addition, the broker must also understand the customer’s specific investment objectives to determine whether or not the specific product or security being recommended is appropriate for the customer based upon their needs.

The number of customer complaints against Broad is high relative to his peers. According to InvestmentNews, only about 12% of financial advisors have any type of disclosure event on their records. Brokers must publicly disclose certain types of reportable events on their CRD including but not limited to customer complaints. In addition to disclosing client disputes brokers must divulge IRS tax liens, judgments, and criminal matters. However, FINRA’s records are not always complete according to a Wall Street Journal story that checked with 26 state regulators and found that at least 38,400 brokers had regulatory or financial red flags such as a personal bankruptcy that showed up in state records but not on BrokerCheck. More disturbing is the fact that 19,000 out of those 38,400 brokers had spotless BrokerCheck records.

Investors who have suffered investment losses due to broker misconduct may be able recover their losses through securities arbitration. The attorneys at Gana LLP are experienced in representing investors concerning securities violations. Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.