Articles Tagged with Hilltop Securities

shutterstock_187532303-300x200The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP are investigating BrokerCheck records reports that financial advisor Richard Cagle (Cagle), formerly employed by Hilltop Securities Independent Network Inc. (Hilltop Securities) has been subject to at least two customer complaints and one regulatory complaint resulting in a bar from the financial industry.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Cagle’s customer complaints allege that Cagle recommended unsuitable securities recommendations among other allegations of misconduct in the handling of customer accounts.

In July 2019 Cagle consented to the sanction and to the entry of findings that he refused to appear and provide an on-the-record testimony requested by FINRA.  FINRA stated that it commenced an investigation into whether Cagle violated FINRA rules by making unsuitable investment recommendations and mismarking customer order tickets while associated with his former member firm.  Cagle’s failure to respond to the investigation drew an automatic bar from the industry.

Continue Reading

shutterstock_189302954-300x203According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Mark Augusta (Augusta), currently employed by Hilltop Securities, Inc. (Hilltop Securities) has been subject to at least an astonishing 19 customer complaints and one employment termination for cause.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Augusta’s customer complaints allege that Augusta sold his clients a variety of improper products including Puerto Rico municipal bonds, interest rate swap CDs (structured CDs), and other unsuitable debt securities.

In May 2015 Augusta’s then employer Wedbush Securities Inc. (Wedbush Securities) terminated Augusta after a client filed a complaint against him.

In February 2019 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Augusta violated the securities laws by, among other things, engaged in unauthorized and unsuitable investments made by the financial advisor in June 2014.  The claim alleged $398,832 in damages and is currently pending.

In August 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Augusta violated the securities laws by, among other things, making unsuitable investments, breach of fiduciary duty, misrepresentations and omissions, negligence, and violations of California securities laws. The claim alleged $97,774 in damages and is currently pending.

In July 2018 a customer filed a complaint alleging that Augusta violated the securities laws by, among other things, misrepresentation by omission with respect to the disclosure of representative’s regulatory and disciplinary history, unsuitable recommendations, and financial abuse of an elder.  The claim seeks $375,000 in damages and is currently pending.

Continue Reading

shutterstock_175835072-300x199According to BrokerCheck records financial advisor Walter Valenzuela (Valenzuela), currently employed by Hilltop Securities Inc. (Hilltop Securities) has been subject to at least seven customer complaint.  According to records kept by The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), many of the complaints against Valenzuela concern excessive trading of unit investment trust (UITs) securities.

In July 2018 a customer complained that Valenzuela engaged in unsuitable recommendations, misrepresentation, and excessive trading involving UITs causing $3 million in damages.  The claim is currently pending.

In August 2017 a customer complained of unsuitable recommendations, unsuitable use of margin, churning, financial exploitation, elder abuse and excessive mark-up/mark-down with respect to municipal bond and UIT trades executed in the account.  The complaint also alleged that the representative failed to obtain proper breakpoint discounts for UIT purchases. The customer alleges $9.5 million in damages and the claim is currently pending

Continue Reading