Broker David Menashe Sanctioned For Excessive and Unauthorized Trading

shutterstock_123758422-300x200Gana LLP is investigating claims made by Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against broker David Menashe (Menashe). According to BrokerCheck records, Menashe was ordered to pay a restitution of $15,000 by the state of Montana for alleged excessive trading and unauthorized trading in June 2016.

Menashe entered the industry in 2009. He is currently registered and employed at Newbridge Securities, where he has been employed since January 2017. His past employment includes:

• Joseph Stone Capital LLC (February 2013 – January 2017)
• First Midwest Securities Inc. (March 2010 – February 2013)
• John Thomas Financial (December 2009 – March 2010)
• GunnAllen Financial, Inc. (November 2009 – December 2009)

When brokers engage in excessive trading, sometimes referred to as churning, the broker will typical trade in and out of securities, sometimes even the same stock, many times over a short period of time. Often times the account will completely “turnover” every month with different securities. This type of investment trading activity in the client’s account serves no reasonable purpose for the investor and is engaged in only to profit the broker through the generation of commissions created by the trades. Churning is considered a species of securities fraud. The elements of the claim are excessive transactions of securities, broker control over the account, and intent to defraud the investor by obtaining unlawful commissions. A similar claim, excessive trading, under FINRA’s suitability rule involves just the first two elements. Certain commonly used measures and ratios used to determine churning help evaluate a churning claim. These ratios look at how frequently the account is turned over plus whether or not the expenses incurred in the account made it unreasonable that the investor could reasonably profit from the activity.

The number of complaints against Menashe are unusual compared to his peers.  According to newsources, only about 7.3% of financial advisors have any type of disclosure event on their records among brokers employed from 2005 to 2015.  Brokers must publicly disclose reportable events on their CRD customer complaints, IRS tax liens, judgments, investigations, and even criminal matters.  However, studies have found that there are fraud hotspots such as certain parts of California, New York or Florida, where the rates of disclosure can reach 18% or higher.  Moreover, according to the New York Times, BrokerCheck may be becoming increasing inaccurate and understate broker misconduct as studies have shown that 96.9% of broker requests to clean their records of complaints are granted.

At Gana LLP, our attorneys are experienced representing investors who have suffered securities losses due to the mishandling of their accounts. Claims may be brought in securities arbitration before FINRA. Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.