The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) sanctioned and barred broker David Blasik (Blasik) concerning allegations that Blasik engage in outside business activities. When the outside business activity also includes the recommendation of investments the activity is referred to in the industry as “selling away.”
FINRA Rule 8210 authorizes the regulator to require persons associated with a FINRA member to provide information with respect to any matter involved in the investigation. In December 2014, FINRA alleged that it pursued an investigation into allegations that Blasik engaged in undisclosed outside business activities. FINRA requested that Blasik provide documents and information to the agency. On December 30, 2014, FINRA stated that Blasik emailed the regulator and stated that he would not provide information or cooperate in the investigation.
According to Blasik’s brokercheck he has disclosed outside business activities including his tax preparation company. Blasik’s disclosures also reveal that he has been employed or involved with Commercial Metal Fabricators, Gateway Sports MGM, and DMH of Ohio, Inc. It is unclear at this time what organization Blasik was involved with that FINRA was investigating.
Blasik first became registered with FINRA through his association with a member firm in 2001 through PFS Investments Inc. (PFS) Blasik’s registration with PFS was terminated in December 2014.
The allegations against Blasik are consistent with a potential “selling away” securities violation. 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 the brokerage firm claims to be unaware of these activities, under the FINRA rules, a brokerage firm owes a duty to properly monitor and supervise its employees in order to detect and prevent brokers from offering such products. In order to properly supervise their brokers each firm is required to have procedures in order to monitor the activities of each registered representative. Selling away often occurs in environments where the brokerage firms either fails to put in place a reasonable supervisory system or fails to actually implement that system and meet supervisory requirements.
In selling away cases, investors are unaware that the advisor’s investments are either not registered or not real. Typically investors will not learn that the broker’s activities were wrongful until after the investment scheme is publicized or the broker simply shuts down shop and stops returning client calls.
Investors who have suffered losses may be able recover their losses through securities arbitration. The attorneys at Gana Weinstein 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.