According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor John Neely (Neely), currently employed by St. Bernard Financial Services, Inc. (St. Bernard Financial) has been subject to at least one customer complaint, three regulatory actions, and one employment termination for cause. According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Neely has been accused by FINRA of engaging in unauthorized trading in client accounts.
In November 2018 FINRA settled a regulatory action against Neely stating that Neely consented to sanctions and findings that he exercised discretion in effecting hundreds of transactions in two customers’ brokerage accounts without obtaining written approval from the customers to do so. FINRA also found that the customers verbally authorized Neely to exercise discretion in their accounts but that Neely never sought his firm’s approval to service either customer’s accounts on a discretionary basis. In addition, according to FINRA Neely’s firm prohibited the use of discretion in brokerage accounts altogether.
In September 2018 Neely’s then employer Berthel, Fisher & Company Financial Services, Inc. (Berthel Fisher) terminated Neely stating that he failed to respond to an inquiry from the compliance department.