The securities lawyers of Gana Weinstein LLP are investigating customer complaints against broker Clarence Mark Tingle (Tingle). In addition, The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) brought an enforcement action (FINRA No. 2014042951501) against Tingle. There are at least 2 customer complaints against Tingle and 1 regulatory action. The customer complaints against Tingle allege a number of securities law violations including that the broker made unauthorized trading, excessively traded accounts, and failed to follow instructions among other claims.
The most recent customer complaint was filed in October 2014 and alleges excessive trading from September 2011 through July 2014 causing $40,954 in damages.
In a FINRA regulatory action against Tingle, the agency alleged that between August 2009 and June 2014, Tingle at times exercised discretion in the accounts of six customers without first obtaining the customers’ written authorization. Although the customers orally authorized the use of discretion Tingle failed to obtain their written authorization in violation of industry rules.
Advisors are not allowed to engage in unauthorized trading. Such trading occurs when a broker sells securities without the prior authority from the investor. All brokers are under an obligation to first discuss trades with the investor before executing them under NYSE Rule 408(a) and FINRA Rules 2510(b). These rules explicitly prohibit brokers from making discretionary trades in a customers’ non-discretionary accounts. The SEC has also found that unauthorized trading to be fraudulent nature because no disclosure could be more important to an investor than to be made aware that a trade will take place.
Tingle entered the securities industry in January 1995. Since that time Tingle has been registered with Morgan Stanley out of the firm’s Rehoboth Beach, Delaware office location.
The number of customer complaints against Tingle 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.
The investment attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP represent investors who have suffered securities losses due to the mishandling of their accounts. The majority of these claims may be brought in securities arbitration before FINRA. Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.