According to BrokerCheck records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) advisor Dennis McMurray (McMurray), in August 2017, was terminated by his firm, Girard Securities, Inc. (Girard Securities) based on allegations that McMurray violated the firm’s policy on selling away and private securities transactions. The firm also alleged that McMurray used a non-approved email address. In addition, McMurray was barred from the industry by FINRA after FINRA requested documents and information related to an investigation into the circumstances surrounding his termination from Girard and McMurray refused to provide documents.
At this time it is unclear the extent and scope of McMurray’s private securities activities. McMurray’s CRD lists that he is engaged in several outside business activities including 2 Truths – a mobile application development company, and is a part owner of Veritas IQ – a marketing, networking and personal development company. At this time it is unclear whether or not McMurray’s private securities activities involve these entities or one that is not listed.
The providing of loans or selling of notes and other investments outside of a brokerage firm constitutes impermissible private securities transactions – a practice known in the industry as “selling away”.
In the industry the term selling away refers to when a financial advisor solicits investments in companies, promissory notes, or other securities that are not pre-approved by the broker’s affiliated firm. However, even though when these incidents occur the brokerage firm claims ignorance of their advisor’s activities the firm is obligated under the FINRA rules to properly monitor and supervise its employees in order to detect and prevent brokers from offering investments in this fashion. In order to properly supervise their brokers each firm is required to have procedures in order to monitor the activities of each advisor’s activities and interaction with the public. Selling away misconduct often occurs where brokerage firms either fail to put in place a reasonable supervisory system or fail to actually implement that system. Supervisory failures allow brokers to engage in unsupervised misconduct that can include all manner improper conduct including selling away.
In cases of selling away the investor is unaware that the advisor’s investments are improper. In many of these cases the investor will not learn that the broker’s activities were wrongful until after the investment scheme is publicized, the broker is fired or charged by law enforcement, or stops returning client calls altogether.
McMurray entered the securities industry in 2001. From November 2008 until October 2013 McMurray was associated with LPL Financial LLC. From October 2013 until September 2016 McMurray was associated with Girard Securities out of the firm’s Irvine, California office location.
Investors who have suffered losses may be able recover their losses through securities arbitration. The attorneys at Gana LLP are experienced in representing investors in cases of selling away and brokerage firms failure to supervise their representatives. Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.