Articles Tagged with alternative investments

shutterstock_78835723-300x198The investment fraud lawyers of Gana LLP are investigating regulatory complaints of broker Thomas Edward Gackle (Gackle). According to the BrokerCheck records kept by Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) broker Thomas Edward Gackle was permanently barred in July 2016 from the securities industry for failing to appear for on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA during the course of an investigation. In addition, the broker has been subject to at least one customer complaint and one employment separation for cause among other claims. The customer complaint against Gackle involve direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs).

In April 2015, a customer filed a complaint alleging that the amount of income ($100,000.00) stated on the suitability form was invalid and an investment purchased March 2015 caused $1,000,000.00 in damages. This complaint is currently pending.

This customer complaint resulted in Gackle to resign from his position at Lowell & Company in April 2015. This was based on allegations of failure to disclose material levents prior to association with Lowell & Company, which was an order issued by the Kansas Bar for the indefinite suspension from practicing law in the state of Kansas. Gackle’s resignation preceded FINRA’s sanctions, barring him from securities industry.

shutterstock_182053859-300x200Our investment attorneys are investigating customer complaints filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against Michael Spears (Spears) currently associated with IMS Securities, Inc. alleging negligence, failure to supervise, misrepresentation, breach of fiduciary duty among other claims. According to BrokerCheck records Spears has been subject to two customer complaints involving direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), and other alternative investments.

The most recent claim was filed in August 2016 and alleges that, while Spears was employed at IMS Securities, acted negligently, misrepresented material facts, failed to supervise, and breached his fiduciary duty in connection to non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs) causing damages of $1,667,000. The claim is currently pending.

In July 2016, a customer filed a complaint alleging that Spears breached his fiduciary duty, over-concentrated investments, and failed to supervise in correlation to real estate products and variable annuity investments causing $3,000,000 in damages. The claim is currently pending.

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shutterstock_178801067Our investment attorneys are investigating customer complaints filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against Paul Neves (Neves) currently associated with Securities America, Inc. (Securities America) alleging unsuitable investments, breach of fiduciary duty, common law fraud, and elder abuse among other claims.  According to brokercheck records Neves has been subject to five customer complaints.  Many of the complaints involve direct participation products (DPPs) such as non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), equipment leasing funds – such as LEAF or ICON, and other alternative investments.

In November 2015 a customer filed a complaint alleging unsuitable investments and elder abuse.  The customer claimed damages of $800,000.  The claim is currently pending.

Our firm has represented many clients in illiquid alternative investments products.  All of these investments come with high costs and have historically underperformed even safe benchmarks, like U.S. treasury bonds.  For example, products like oil and gas partnerships, REITs, and other alternative investments are only appropriate for a narrow band of investors under certain conditions due to the high costs, illiquidity, and huge redemption charges of the products, if they can be redeemed at all.  However, due to the high commissions brokers earn on these products they sell them to investors who cannot profit from them and have created a large market for a failed product.  Further, investor often fail to understand that they have lost money in these illiquid investments until many years after investing.  In sum, for all of their costs and risks, investors in these programs are in no way additionally compensated for the loss of liquidity, risks, or cost.

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shutterstock_175835072The investment attorneys at Gana LLP are investigating the potential unsuitable sales of securities sponsored by APX Energy.  APX Energy claims on its website that it is an independent oil and gas exploration company focusing on the Illinois Basin and other areas in the southern United States. The firm claims over 25 years of experience in the oil and gas industry. The company sponsors several oil and gas private placements.

Our firm has represented many clients in these types of products.  All of these investments come with high costs and historically have underperformed even safe benchmarks, like U.S. treasury bonds.  Alternative investments are only appropriate for a narrow band of investors under certain conditions due to their high costs, illiquidity, and huge redemption charges – if they can be redeemed.  However, due to the high commissions brokers earn on these products they sell them to investors who cannot profit from them.  Further, investor often fail to understand that they have lost money until many years after agreeing to the investment.  In sum, for all of their costs and risks, investors in these programs are in no way additionally compensated for the loss of liquidity, risks, or cost.

Investors often do not understand the substantial risks of oil and gas limited partnerships and private placements.  As recently reported in Reuters, when offerings by Atlas Energy LP, another issuer of oil and gas private placements were analyzed, investors only get to see 65-70% of their capital actually put to work on oil and gas projects.  Further, the returns on these projects had more in common with running profitable casinos than investments. Reuters found that slightly more than half of 43 private placements Atlas issued over the past three decades investors lost money or just broke even. While investors lost in more than half of the deals in 29 or 67% of those deals, Atlas actually out-performed their own investors.

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shutterstock_12144202The securities lawyers of Gana LLP are investigating a customer complaints filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against broker Steven Orr (Orr).  According to BrokerCheck records Orr has been subject to at least five customer complaints and two criminal matters.  The customer complaints against Orr allege securities law violations that including unsuitable investments and misrepresentations among other claims.   Many of the complaints involve direct participation products (DPPs) and private placements including oil and gas partnerships, non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), and other alternative investments.

Our firm has represented many clients in these types of products.  All of these investments come with high costs and historically have underperformed even safe benchmarks, like U.S. treasury bonds.  For example, products like oil and gas partnerships, REITs, and other alternative investments are only appropriate for a narrow band of investors under certain conditions due to the high costs, illiquidity, and huge redemption charges of the products, if they can be redeemed.  However, due to the high commissions brokers earn on these products they sell them to investors who cannot profit from them.  Further, investor often fail to understand that they have lost money until many years after agreeing to the investment.  In sum, for all of their costs and risks, investors in these programs are in no way additionally compensated for the loss of liquidity, risks, or cost.

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shutterstock_128655458The securities fraud lawyers of Gana LLP are investigating customer complaints and regulatory actions filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) against broker Richard Poston (Poston). According to BrokerCheck records, Poston has spent 20 years in the securities industry and was most recently registered with H. Beck, Inc. (H. Beck) in Plano, Texas.  Poston is currently not licensed to act as a broker or an investment adviser.  Over his career, Poston has been the subject of at least four customer complaints, one regulatory investigation, one employment separation for cause, and one bankruptcy.

The most recent regulatory investigation was filed in December 2015 by FINRA alleging potential violations of FINRA Rules 2010, 2150, 3240, and 8210. These rules revolve around standards of commercial honor and equitable principles of trade, improper use of customers’ securities or funds, the borrowing or lending money from or to any customer without written approval.

The most recent complaint was filed in March 2016 while employed at H. Beck alleging that Poston, from October 2007, until September 2015 made unsuitable concentrated and illiquid investments in non-traded REIT’s.  The claim is currently pending.

Our firm often handles cases involving direct participation products (DPPs) and private placements including oil and gas partnerships, non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), and other alternative investments.

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shutterstock_182371613The securities lawyers of Gana LLP are investigating a customer complaints filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against broker Robert Cannon (Cannon).  According to BrokerCheck records Cannon has been subject to at least four customer complaints.  The customer complaints against Cannon alleges securities law violations that including unsuitable investments, negligence, fraud, and breach of fiduciary duty among other claims.

Many of the complaints involve direct participation products (DPPs) and private placements including oil and gas partnerships, non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), and other alternative investments.  In a FINRA regulatory action Van Patter was found to have onverconcentrated an investor in alternative investments.

Our firm has represented many clients in these types of products.  All of these investments come with high costs and historically have underperformed even safe benchmarks, like U.S. treasury bonds.  For example, products like oil and gas partnerships, REITs, and other alternative investments are only appropriate for a narrow band of investors under certain conditions due to the high costs, illiquidity, and huge redemption charges of the products, if they can be redeemed.  However, due to the high commissions brokers earn on these products they sell them to investors who cannot profit from them.  Further, investor often fail to understand that they have lost money until many years after agreeing to the investment.  In sum, for all of their costs and risks, investors in these programs are in no way additionally compensated for the loss of liquidity, risks, or cost.

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shutterstock_188631644The securities lawyers of Gana LLP are investigating customer complaints filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against broker Robert Wamhoff (Wamhoff).  According to BrokerCheck records Van Patter has been subject to at least seven customer complaints.  The customer complaints against Wamhoff allege securities law violations that including unsuitable investments and breach of fiduciary duty among other claims.  Many of the complaints involve direct participation products (DPPs), variable annuities, non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), and other alternative investments.

Our firm has represented many clients in these types of products.  All of these investments come with high costs and historically have underperformed even safe benchmarks, like U.S. treasury bonds.  For example, products like oil and gas partnerships, REITs, and other alternative investments are only appropriate for a narrow band of investors under certain conditions due to the high costs, illiquidity, and huge redemption charges of the products, if they can be redeemed.  However, due to the high commissions brokers earn on these products they sell them to investors who cannot profit from them.  Further, investor often fail to understand that they have lost money until many years after agreeing to the investment.  In sum, for all of their costs and risks, investors in these programs are in no way additionally compensated for the loss of liquidity, risks, or cost.

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shutterstock_188606033The securities lawyers of Gana LLP are investigating customer complaints filed with The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) against broker Dennis Van Patter (Van Patter).  According to BrokerCheck records Van Patter has been subject to at least eight customer complaints and one regulatory action.  The customer complaints against Van Patter allege securities law violations that including unsuitable investments, misrepresentations, and breach of fiduciary duty among other claims.  Many of the complaints involve direct participation products (DPPs) and private placements including oil and gas partnerships, non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs), and other alternative investments.  In a FINRA regulatory action Van Patter was found to have onverconcentrated an investor in alternative investments.

Our firm has represented many clients in these types of products.  All of these investments come with high costs and historically have underperformed even safe benchmarks, like U.S. treasury bonds.  For example, products like oil and gas partnerships, REITs, and other alternative investments are only appropriate for a narrow band of investors under certain conditions due to the high costs, illiquidity, and huge redemption charges of the products, if they can be redeemed.  However, due to the high commissions brokers earn on these products they sell them to investors who cannot profit from them.  Further, investor often fail to understand that they have lost money until many years after agreeing to the investment.  In sum, for all of their costs and risks, investors in these programs are in no way additionally compensated for the loss of liquidity, risks, or cost.

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shutterstock_103665437The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) brought an enforcement action (FINRA No. 2013038133001) against broker Joseph Daigneault (Daigneault) resulting in a monetary sanction and a suspension. In addition, according to the BrokerCheck records kept by FINRA, Daigneault has been the subject of at least 1 customer complaint. The customer complaint against Barthole allege unsuitable investments concerning alternative investments and claims $1,000,000 in damages.

FINRA’s findings stated that from October 2005 through September 2013, Daigneault provided consolidated statements to at least eight customers that included misleading information regarding the customers’ financial holdings. According to FINRA, Daigneault manually created the consolidated statements using a spreadsheet program. However, many of the statements that Daigneault created included values for non-traded, illiquid assets that Daigneault listed the value of the customer’s initial investment regardless of the current actual value of the investment. In addition, FINRA found that several statements had a death benefit column where investment values were listed even where the securities in question did not have death benefits.

A consolidated report is a single document that combines financial information regarding a customer’s financial holdings on one statement. Consolidated reports are supplements but do not replace customer account statements. Due to the increasing complexity of investments offered by brokers from multiple different issuers and platform FINRA issued Regulatory Notice 10-19 reminding brokers and brokerage firms that consolidated report are communications with the public that must be must be clear, accurate, and not misleading. The valuations and values provided on the statements must be consistent with the customer’s official account statement. When creating consolidated account statements broker must take reasonable steps to accurately report information.

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