SII Investments Terminates Frank Cuenca Over Variable Annuity Practices

shutterstock_61848763-300x203The securities attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP are currently investigating former International Assets Advisory, LLC (International Assets) broker Frank Cuenca.  According to BrokerCheck records, in December 2017, Cuenca was terminated by SII Investments, Inc. (SII investments) for failing to follow his firm’s procedures regarding submitting variable annuity transactions. He also failed to submit a customer complaint and unapproved email in a timely manner. In addition, Cuenca has been subject to five customer disputes, the majority alleging failure to follow customer instructions.

In March 2009, a customer alleged that in 2008, Cuenca failed to follow customer instructions to liquidate the account and to move $12,000 back into the market. The customer requested $12,000 in damages.

In December 2008, a customer alleged that Cuenca liquidated the customer account without the customer knowledge or permission. The customer requested $5,000 in damages.

Variable annuities are complex financial and insurance products. Essentially, a variable annuity is a contract with an insurance company under which the insurer agrees to make periodic payments to you. The investor chooses the investments made in the annuity and value of your variable annuity will vary depending on the performance of the investment options chosen. Recently, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) released a publication entitled: Variable Annuities: What You Should Know encouraging investors to ask questions about the variable annuity before investing.

The primary benefits of variable annuities are the death benefit and tax deferment of investment gains. However, the benefits of variable annuities are often outweighed by the terms of the contract that include exorbitant expenses such as surrender charges, mortality and expense charges, management fees, market-related risks, and rider costs.

Cuenca entered the securities industry in 1991 and has been registered with International Assets since January 2018, From September 2008 to December 2017, Cuenca was registered with SII Investments, Inc. From September 2006 to September 2008, Cuenca was registered with Securities Service Network, Inc. From January 1996 to September 2006, Cuenca was registered with FSC Securities Corporation. From January 1994 to January 1996, Cuenca was registered with Royal Alliance Associates, Inc.

Cuenca’s record shows an unusual amount of complaints in comparison 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. However, studies have found that in certain parts of California, New York or Florida, the rates of disclosure go up to as high as 18%.  Brokers must publicly disclose reportable events on their CRD customer complaints, IRS tax liens, judgments, investigations, and even criminal matters.

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 failure to follow customer instructions and brokerage firms failure to supervise their representatives.  Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.