According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor John Maloney (Maloney), formerly employed by Edward Jones has been subject to five customer complaints and one termination for cause. According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), in May 2016 Edward Jones terminated Maloney stating that he did not adhere to the firm’s policy regarding suitability of recommendations. Most of a Maloney’s customer complaints allege that Maloney made unsuitable recommendations in equity securities.
In November 2017 a customer made allegations of misrepresentation, suitability, breach of fiduciary duty, and churning of her accounts. The claim is currently pending.
In September 2017 a customer alleged an unsuitable investment recommendation in Fire Eye stock causing losses of $329,523. The claim 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 Maloney 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.
Maloney entered the securities industry in 1981. From 1981 until June 2016 Maloney was registered with Edward Jones. Currently, Maloney is registered with Woodbury Financial Services, Inc. out of the firm’s Morristown, Tennessee 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.