Advisor Yousuf (Joe) Saljooki Subject to Multiple Churning Complaints

shutterstock_180412949-300x200According to BrokerCheck records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) broker Yousuf (Joe) Saljooki (Saljooki) has been subject to at least seven customer complaints, two regulatory actions, two employment terminations for cause, and one debt lien or judgement during his career.  Saljooki is formerly employed by Worden Capital Management LLC (Worden Capital) but has worked for a total of nine firms during his 12 year career.  The customer complaints against Saljooki concern allegations of high frequency trading activity also referred to as churning and unsuitable investments.

In July 2018 FINRA suspended Saljooki after he failed to respond to the regulator’s requests for information.

In April 2018 Saljooki was discharged from Worden Capital for failing to disclose and outstanding tax lien to the State of Arkansas during the application process for registration with the state.

In February 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Saljooki violated the securities laws by engaging in churning, unsuitable investments, and fraud.  The claim alleged $523,930 in damages.  The claim settled for $50,000.

In December 2017 SW Financial discharged Saljooki after the firm alleged that Saljooki opened a branch office under another name without the permission of the firm in violation of FINRA Rule 3270.  The firm also accused him of violating Reg S-P by obtaining client information.

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.

According to newsources, a study revealed that 7.3% of financial advisors had a customer complaint on their record when records from 2005 to 2015 were examined.  Brokers must publicly disclose reportable events on their BrokerCheck reports that include customer complaints, IRS tax liens, judgments, investigations, terminations, and criminal cases.  In addition, research has show a disturbing pattern with troublesome brokers where brokers with high numbers of customer complaints are not kicked out of the industry but instead these brokers are sifted to lower quality brokerage firms with loose hiring practices and higher rates of customer complaints.  These lower quality firms may average brokers with five times as many complaints as the industry average.

Saljooki entered the securities industry in 2006.  From August 2015 until December 2017 Saljooki was registered with SW Financial.  From December 2017 until April 2018 Saljooki was registered with Worden Capital out of the firm’s Melville, New York office location.

At Gana Weinstein LLP, our attorneys are experienced representing investors who have suffered securities losses due to excessive trading and churning violations.  Investors who have suffered losses are encouraged to contact us at (800) 810-4262 for consultation.  Claims may be brought in securities arbitration before FINRA.  Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.