According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Jack Griffith (Griffith), currently employed by Janney Montgomery Scott LLC (Janney Scott) has been subject to five customer complaints and one lien. According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), most of a Griffith’s customer complaints allege that Griffith made unsuitable recommendations in equity securities.
In January 2018 a customer made allegations unsuitable recommendations for the client’s account, overconcentration, and breached his fiduciary duty. The claim alleged $200,000 in damages and is currently pending.
Also in January 2018 another customer made allegations of unsuitable recommendations for the client’s account. The claim alleged $150,000 in damages and is currently pending.
In February 2017 a customer made allegations that Griffith recommended unsuitable securities and caused an over-concentration in energy investments. The claim alleged $4,265,639 in damages and is currently pending.
Brokers have a responsibility treat investors fairly which includes obligations such as making only suitable investments for the client. In order to make a suitable recommendation the broker must meet certain requirements. First, there must be reasonable basis for the recommendation the product or security based upon the broker’s investigation and due diligence into the investment’s properties including its benefits, risks, tax consequences, and other relevant factors. Second, the broker then must match the investment as being appropriate for the customer’s specific investment needs and objectives such as the client’s retirement status, long or short term goals, age, disability, income needs, or any other relevant factor.
The number of complaints against Griffith 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.
Griffith entered the securities industry in 1986. From October 2009 until January 2014 Griffith was registered with Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. Since January 2014, Griffith has been registered with Janney Scott out of the firm’s Columbia, South Carolina office location.
At Gana Weinstein 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.