South Florida Broker Barred for Failure to Cooperate With Investigation Regarding Unsuitable Investments
Recently, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) indefinitely barred investment advisor Matthew Singer (CRD #4972708) from the securities industry. Mr. Singer was last employed at Morgan Stanley, working out of an office in Aventura, Florida. This representative has also previously been associated with FBN Securities and Ascendiant Capital Markets.
According to investigators, Mr. Singer declined to cooperate with FINRA’s official inquiry into allegations that he made unsuitable investment recommendations to investors while working at Morgan Stanley. This conduct is a direct violation of FINRA Rule 8210, which mandates that all registered representatives must cooperate with regulatory investigations.
FINRA Complaint: Matthew Singer of Morgan Stanley
In 2016, FINRA opened up an investigation into investor complaints that had been filed against securities broker Matthew Singer. These complaints stemmed from a period during which this individual was employed as a broker at Morgan Stanley in South Florida. Notably, during this time, at least three customers filed complaints against Matthew Singer. As of June of 2018, two of the complaints have now been settled:
- In October of 2015, an investor filed a complaint alleging that Mr. Singer recommended investment products that were not suitable for his desired level of risk. This complaint was eventually settled for $365,000 in financial compensation.
- In December of 2016, an investor of Morgan Stanley filed a complaint alleging that Mr. Singer had made unauthorized trades and made material misrepresentations. This complaint was eventually settled for $60,000.
In the course of its investigation into the allegations against Matthew Singer, FINRA sought on-the-record testimony from this broker. Based on industry rules, FINRA has the legal authority to compel testimony and documents from registered persons. While (through his legal counsel) Mr. Singer acknowledged that he received the request for testimony, he noted his decision to decline to cooperate with the investigation.
Sanctions for Violating FINRA Rules
The failure to cooperate with a FINRA investigation is a very serious breach of securities industry regulations. All brokers and brokerage firms must follow all of FINRA’s rules. These rules are critically important to ensure that investors are fully protected from misconduct. Registered representatives have a responsibility to cooperate with any official review into potential misconduct. The intentional refusal to comply should raise red flags.
As Mr. Singer declined to provide on-the-record testimony, he violated FINRA Rule 8210. In response, the agency issued sanctions, which included an indefinite bar from the securities industry. Without admitting any wrongdoing in this case, former Morgan Stanley broker Matthew Singer consented to the proposed penalties.
Speak to a Miami Unsuitable Investments Lawyer Today
At Carlson & Associates, P.A, our Florida investment fraud lawyers have extensive experience handling securities litigation and FINRA arbitration. If you or a family member sustained major losses because of unsuitable investment guidance, our legal team is here to help.
For a fully private review of your legal case, please give our law firm call today at 1-(305)-372-9700. With an office in Miami, we serve investors in communities throughout the region, including in Miami Beach, Coral Gables, Miami Gardens, Opa-Locka, and Hialeah.