Robert E Richards – and the firm that employs him or her – is regulated by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
If you are like most people, before you go out to dinner at a new restaurant, you probably take a quick look at the reviews. This makes sense; you are going to pay for an expensive dinner, and you need to be sure that you are getting a good value.
Yet, when choosing a financial advisor, many people fail to conduct this same level of due diligence. Before turning over access to your money, you need to be sure that you have found a financial advisor that you can trust. Here, our audit report, including details of allegations, complaints, and sanctions will help you decide whether or not to invest with Robert E Richards.
BrokerComplaints.com is currently investigating allegations related to Robert E Richards. We provide a free platform for investors to help them in their claims against negligent brokers and brokerage firms.
About Robert Richards
Robert E Richards is an Investment Adviser. Robert E Richards’s Central Registration Depository (CRD) number is 2663610 and the FINRA Profile can be found at – https://brokercheck.finra.org/individual/summary/2663610.
Click here to download a Detailed Audit Report for Robert E Richards.
Robert E Richards has previously been reprimanded and has disclosures and/or client dispute(s) listed at FINRA BrokerCheck.
Accusations and Disclosures
You can find below, a quick snapshot of Robert E Richards’s regulatory actions, arbitrations, and complaints.
DISCLOSURE 1 –
- Event Date: 1/11/2016
- Disclosure Type: Regulatory
- Disclosure Resolution: Final
- Disclosure Detail :: DocketNumberFDA: 2013036837803
- DocketNumberAAO: 2013036837803
- Initiated By: FINRA
- Allegations: Without admitting or denying the findings, Richards consented to the sanctions and to the entry of findings that through his actions and omissions, he aided and abetted a price manipulation of penny stocks. The findings stated that specifically, Richards, who was one of the firm’s traders in a company’s stock, aided and abetted the price manipulation of that stock by a broker at another FINRA member firm, and two of the broker’s customers. Also, Richards, who was one of the firm’s traders in another company’s securities, aided and abetted the price manipulation of that company’s securities by a trader at a former FINRA-member firm. At the time Richards made trades in both of the companies’ securities, Richards was reckless in failing to recognize that his actions were part of an overall course of conduct that was illegal or improper and in failing to inquire sufficiently into whether the trades were part of such a course of conduct. Also giving that Richards knew and was aware of certain relevant information, Richards was reckless in failing to recognize that his actions were part of an overall course of conduct that was illegal or improper. The findings also stated that Richards failed to implement his member firm’s AML procedures. By engaging in penny stock trading on behalf of firm customers, the firm’s branch office dealt in a segment of the market prone to fraudulent activity. Despite the risks, Richards, as a supervisor for the branch, did not implement the firm’s AML compliance system. As a result, Richards was either unaware of or chose to ignore numerous red flags related to his branch’s market making activity and the retail trading activity of its customers. Specifically, Richards failed to monitor for red flags associated with suspicious activity, and, when he became aware of red flags, failed to perform additional due diligence or report the suspicious activity to the firm’s AML Compliance Officer (AMLCO). Similarly, Richards executed suspicious trades in those companies’ securities, as discussed above, without making further inquiry. Again, Richards did not report the activity to the firm’s AMLCO. The findings also included that Richards failed to properly supervise the firm’s branch that engaged in high-risk activity – trading and liquidation of low-priced securities. Richards did not regularly review the branch’s trade blotters and other reports to identify suspicious or manipulative trading. As a result, Richards failed to identity or respond to numerous red flags indicating suspicious trading was occurring at the branch. Richards failed to review all of the electronic communications sent or received by the staff he supervised, as required by firm procedures. Richards failed to perform due diligence to verify a person’s identity prior to approving customer accounts. As a result, Richards approved new accounts for individuals with criminal and regulatory backgrounds who subsequently engaged in suspicious trading. Richards failed to adequately implement the firm’s procedures and policies related to compliance with Section 5 of the Securities Act of 1933 regarding the sale of unregistered securities. Richards repeatedly approved new customer accounts and the deposit of low-priced securities without ensuring adequate searching inquiry was conducted, despite evidence that the accounts were to hold recently obtained physical certificates for which there was incomplete documentation as to how and when the customer acquired the shares.
- Resolution: Acceptance, Waiver & Consent(AWC)
- Sanction Details :: Sanctions: Civil and Administrative Penalty(ies)/Fine(s)
- Sanction Details :: Amount: $25,000.00 Sanctions: Requalification Sanctions: Suspension
- Sanction Details :: Registration Capacities Affected: Any capacity
- Duration: two years
- Start Date: 1/19/2016
- End Date: 1/18/2018
According to a study prepared for the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, 80 percent of American investors report that they have been solicited to participate in a fraud scheme, while 11 percent of American investors report that they personally lost money as a result of fraud.
FINRA notes that the rate of investment fraud is most likely much higher than it is reported. This is because many victims of financial advisor scams are too ashamed to come forward. Further, the study also found that a significant number of investors do not know how to spot common red flags of investment fraud. The least you should do is share your experience with other potential victims of investment scams.
Under federal securities law and securities industry regulations, registered investment firms have a legal duty to supervise their financial advisors. Section 15(b)(4)(E) of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934 makes a securities firm liable for the conduct of representatives.
- MONARCH BAY SECURITIES, LLC (CRD#: 141391) :: 7/9/2014 – 4/9/2015 :: IRVINE, CA
- FINANCE 500, INC. (CRD#: 12981) :: 2/4/2005 – 7/7/2014 :: DELRAY BEACH, FL
- MARLINS CAPITAL, LLC (CRD#: 117468) :: 1/2/2004 – 2/17/2005 :: BOCA RATON, FL
- FORGE FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. (CRD#: 100020) :: 1/11/2000 – 1/7/2004 :: BOCA RATON, FL
- THE AGEAN GROUP, INC (CRD#: 30835) :: 5/11/1998 – 11/30/1999 :: BOCA RATON, FL
- ADVANTAGE TRADING GROUP, INC. (CRD#: 39118) :: 3/27/1996 – 5/19/1998 :: LONGWOOD, FL
- EMPIRE FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. (CRD#: 28759) :: 2/5/1996 – 3/20/1996 :: LONGWOOD, FL
The duty to supervise securities representatives is a strong legal requirement. Registered investment firms must take many different steps to ensure that they are protecting their customers from irresponsible and criminal financial advisors.
Legit or Not?
Unfortunately, stockbroker fraud is more common than many investors would like to think. And yes, stockbrokers (including Robert E Richards, but not limited to) can (and do) steal money from their clients. While it’s rare that a broker will literally steal his client’s money (though that does happen), typically the “theft” of investment funds comes in the form of other fraudulent violations of securities law and FINRA rules which leads to significant investment losses.
Investors generally understand that there are risks associated with buying and selling securities. The market can go up, and the market can go down. No matter how skilled of an investor you are, there are always risks. With that being said, sometimes investment losses cannot be blamed on simple back luck.
There are 10 major types of complaints we receive against Investment Brokers –
- Outright Theft (Conversion of Funds)
- Unauthorized Trading
- Misrepresentation or Omission of Material Facts
- Excessive Trading (Churning)
- Lack of Diversification
- Unsuitable Investment Recommendations
- Failure to Disclose a Personal Conflict of Interest
- Front Running of Transactions
- Breakpoint Sale Violations
- Negligent Portfolio Management
Do your due diligence before investing. Public records are available for everybody to review and decide on the safest bet.
How to Protect Yourself
We, as citizens, place a great deal of trust in the financial advisors who are tasked with helping us achieve and maintain financial security. Most of the time financial advisors and stockbrokers are honest folks who work diligently in their client’s best interests. However, on occasion financial advisors and the brokerage firms who employ them mess up and cause serious financial harm to their clients. Sometimes these losses are caused by simple negligence. Other times fraud or other serious misconduct is to blame.
Here are 5 signs that your broker needs to be reported –
- Breach of Fiduciary Duty: Under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, certain investment professionals, known as registered investment advisors (RIAs), owe fiduciary obligations to their customers. Your investment broker must always look out for your best interests. If you lost money because of your broker’s breach of fiduciary duty, you may be entitled to compensation for the full value of your damages.
- Unsuitable Investments: Many financial advisors are not fiduciaries. Instead, they are held to the suitability standard. These stockbrokers and financial advisors can only sell and recommend financial products that are appropriate for a customer’s unique investment profile. If you lost money in unsuitable investments, you should consider reporting them.
- Material Misrepresentations or Omissions: Brokers have a duty to make fair and honest representations to their clients. If they fail to do so, and an investor loses money due to a misrepresentation or a material omission, the broker may be liable for the investor’s losses.
- Lack of Diversification: Brokers must also act with the appropriate level of professional skill. Pushing a customer into over-concentrated investments is highly risky. Brokers can be held liable for losses sustained because of an investor’s inappropriate lack of diversification.
- Excessive Trading (Churning): Stockbrokers and financial advisors must have a well-grounded, reasonable basis to execute all trades. Unfortunately, there are cases in which brokers will frequently trade on a customer’s account, simply to increase their own fees. This unlawful practice is known as churning.
- Unauthorized Trading: Brokers must have the proper legal authority to make transactions on behalf of a client. If you lost money because your broker made trades that you never approved of, you may have been the victim of unauthorized trading. You should consult with an experienced attorney.
Report Robert Richards
In order to prevail in an investment fraud lawsuit or FINRA arbitration cases, you must be able to assert a viable ‘cause of action’.
Robert E Richards – and the firm that employs this broker – is regulated by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). FINRA provides an online form to allow investors to file a formal complaint against their financial advisor, stockbroker, or brokerage firm.
Click here to go to FINRA’s Online Complaint Form →
This form will ask you for specific information related to your complaint. Be prepared by gathering the following:
- Name and symbol for the investment product in question.
- The CRD number (2663610) for the broker – Robert E Richards
- Your complete contact information.
Remember, it is advised to report your broker to FINRA, only after you have exhausted all of your other remedies and carefully prepared a compelling complaint. Once you file a complaint against your broker at FINRA, your case will be bound by FINRA’s rules and the arbitration panel’s eventual decision. The time clock will start, and your complaint will be served on your broker or broker-dealer.
The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the source BrokerComplaints.com and do not necessarily reflect the official position of ‘The Skeptic Files,’ which shall not be held liable for any inaccuracies presented. The information provided within this article is for general informational purposes only. While we try to keep the information up-to-date and correct, there are no representations or warranties, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability of the information in this article for any purpose.
This article is syndicated automatically through a third-party agency from BrokerComplaints.com.
To view the original article at BrokerComplaints.com, you can visit https://brokercomplaints.com/report/robert-e-richards/.