Articles Tagged with equities

shutterstock_168853424The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) sanctioned broker-dealer J.P. Turner & Company, L.L.C. (JP Turner) concerning allegations JP Turner failed to establish and enforce reasonable supervisory procedures to monitor the outside brokerage accounts of its registered representatives. In addition, FINRA alleged that JP Turner failed to establish an escrow account on one contingency offering and broke the escrow without raising the required minimum in bona fide investments.

This isn’t the first time that FINRA has come down on JP Turner’s practices and that our firm has written about the conduct of JP Turner brokers. Those articles can be accessed here (JP Turner Sanctioned By FINRA Over Non-Traditional ETF Sales and Mutual Fund Switches), here (JP Turner Supervisor Sanctioned Over Failure to Supervise Mutual Fund Switches), and here (SEC Finds that Former JP Turner Broker Ralph Calabro Churned A Client’s Account).

JP Turner has been FINRA firm since 1997. JP Turner engages in a wide range of securities transactions including the sale of municipal and corporate debt securities, equities, mutual funds, options, oil and gas interests, private placements, variable annuities, and other direct participation programs. JP Turner employs approximately 422 financial advisors and operates out of 185 branch offices with principal offices in Atlanta, Georgia.

David G. Zeng (Zeng) was recently barred from the financial industry by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) over allegations that the broker failed to respond to the regulator’s inquiries concerning at least a dozen customer disputes initiated against the broker.  The customer complaints against Zeng include claims of misrepresentations, fraud, unsuitable investments, and unauthorized trading concerning stock investments.

It is also possible that Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc. (Merrill Lynch), Zeng’s employing firm during the majority of the customer complaints, failed to properly supervise Zeng’s securities activities.  Under FINRA Rule 3010, a brokerage firm is obligated to properly monitor and supervise its employees.  The rule states that “[e]ach member shall establish and maintain a system to supervise the activities of each registered representative…that is reasonably designed to achieve compliance with applicable securities laws and regulations…”  Thus, brokerage firms are responsible for monitoring a broker’s investment recommendations to clients, outside business activities, and representations to investors.

Zeng became registered with FINRA in 2001 at Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Inc until June 2005.  From June 2005 until May 2009, Zeng was associated with UBS Financial Services, Inc.  Thereafter, from April 17, 2009, until December 20, 2011, Zeng was employed by Merrill Lynch and worked out of the firm’s Santa Fe, New Mexico office.

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