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Articles Posted in Unsuitable Investment Advice

Michael Fahsholtz (Michael Anthony Fahsholtz CRD#: 2057306) is a former broker and investment advisor who was registered with broker-dealer Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Incorporated (CRD#:793) from 2011 until he left the brokerage industry in 2020. Fahsholtz was based in Wenatchee, Washington. Fahsholtz’s FINRA BrokerCheck Report, published by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) indicates that he is the subject of five pending securities arbitration claims, and that three other disputes lodged against Fahsholtz have been settled.  FINRA Arbitration Claims Against Fahsholtz Pile Up Over Past Three Years  Fahsholtz is facing five pending customer disputes, all of which concern his recommendations that customers invest in corporate debt instruments and unit investment trusts (UITs).  Many of the disputes contain the same allegations, including:Michael Fahsholtz (Michael Anthony Fahsholtz CRD#: 2057306) is a former broker and investment advisor who was registered with broker-dealer Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Incorporated (CRD#:793) from 2011 until he left the brokerage industry in 2020. Fahsholtz was based in Wenatchee, Washington. Fahsholtz’s FINRA BrokerCheck Report, published by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) indicates that he is the subject of five pending securities arbitration claims, and that three other disputes lodged against Fahsholtz have been settled. Continue reading ›

Former NEXT Financial Group broker Charles Kulch (Charles Chester Kulch CRD# 2371584) is the subject of four pending customer disputes, as well as five settled disputes, according to his FINRA record. Kulch was previously registered with NEXT Financial Group, Inc. in Nashua, New Hampshire from 2006 until he left the brokerage industry in 2020. According to Kulch’s CRD Report, he was also operating Kulch Associates Inc., a tax preparation service, and Kulch Insurance Group LLC.Former NEXT Financial Group broker Charles Kulch (Charles Chester Kulch CRD# 2371584) is the subject of four pending customer disputes, as well as five settled disputes, according to his FINRA record. Kulch was previously registered with NEXT Financial Group, Inc. in Nashua, New Hampshire from 2006 until he left the brokerage industry in 2020. According to Kulch’s CRD Report, he was also operating Kulch Associates Inc., a tax preparation service, and Kulch Insurance Group LLC. Continue reading ›

Thomas Fross (Thomas Michael Fross CRD:# 4509874) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed with LPL Financial of The Villages, FL. He was previously employed with Securities America, Inc. (CRD#:10205), also of The Villages. He has been in the industry since 2002.  Fross is currently the subject of a pending dispute over the sale of a client’s securities, filed on 6/10/2020. In it, the client claims that Fross failed to follow instructions in regards to “unsuitable portfolio changes” from 3/26/20 TO 8/21/20. The client requests damages in the amount of $119,716.05. Fross responds that he denies all allegations, that he discussed everything with the customer, and the changes were made in order to move into more conservative investments.Thomas Fross (Thomas Michael Fross CRD:# 4509874) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed with LPL Financial of The Villages, FL. He was previously employed with Securities America, Inc. (CRD#:10205), also of The Villages. He has been in the industry since 2002. Continue reading ›

Kevin Schaefer (Kevin Joseph Schaefer CRD:# 1286030) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed with Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC (CRD#: 19616) of San Francisco, CA. His previous employers include Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC (CRD#:149777) and UBS Financial Services Inc. (CRD#:8174), both of San Francisco, and Smith Barney Shearson Inc. (CRD#:7059) of New York, NY. He has been in the industry since 1984.  Schaefer is the subject of two currently pending disputes. The first, filed on 6/12/2020, alleges “unsuitable investment recommendations and misrepresentations.” The client requests damages of $1,000,000.  The second, filed on 6/4/2020, alleges “unsuitable investment recommendations, failure to follow instructions and misrepresentations from 2012 until 2020.”  The client requests damages of $300,000.Kevin Schaefer (Kevin Joseph Schaefer CRD:# 1286030) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed with Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC (CRD#: 19616) of San Francisco, CA. His previous employers include Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC (CRD#:149777) and UBS Financial Services Inc. (CRD#:8174), both of San Francisco, and Smith Barney Shearson Inc. (CRD#:7059) of New York, NY. He has been in the industry since 1984. Continue reading ›

Gregory Williams (Gregory Jon Williams CRD#: 1561089) is a previously registered broker and investment advisor whose last known employer was Forta Financial Group, Inc. (CRD#:28784) of Greenwood Village, CO. His previous employers include Morgan Stanley Smith Barney (CRD#:149777) and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (CRD#:7059) of Denver, CO, and Banc One Securities Corporation (CRD#:16999) of Chicago, IL. He has been in the industry since 1986.  Williams is currently the subject of four pending customer disputes with nearly identical allegations of unsuitability, misrepresentation, and negligence. The claims were filed between 3/31/2020 and 10/26/2020. The collective requested damages total $1,349,000. In two of the four claims, the firm denies the claims and will defend themselves.  A previous customer dispute filed on 3/29/2020 involving multiple claimants also included allegations of unsuitability, negligence, fraud, and misrepresentation. This case went into FINRA arbitration. Although the six claimants requested damages of $578,821.00, ultimately, only two of the claimants were awarded anything, damages totaling $45,818.00. The other four claimants were denied damages.Gregory Williams (Gregory Jon Williams CRD#: 1561089) is a previously registered broker and investment advisor whose last known employer was Forta Financial Group, Inc. (CRD#:28784) of Greenwood Village, CO. His previous employers include Morgan Stanley Smith Barney (CRD#:149777) and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (CRD#:7059) of Denver, CO, and Banc One Securities Corporation (CRD#:16999) of Chicago, IL. He has been in the industry since 1986. Continue reading ›

David Bibo (David Omori Bibo CRD#: 2602436) is a registered broker currently employed with WESTERN INTERNATIONAL SECURITIES, INC. (CRD#: 39262) of San Jose, CA. He was previously employed with Myclearing.Com (CRD#:104161) and Interfirst Capital Corporation (CRD#:7659), both of Los Angeles, and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (CRD#:7691) of New York, NY. He has been in the industry since 1995. Bibo is the subject of two currently pending customer disputes regarding unsuitable recommendations. The first, filed on 12/18/2019, requests damages in the amount of $1,500,000. The second, filed on 9/22/2020, requests $300,000 in damages. Two previous filed on 5/15/2019 with concerns over “reasonableness of investment” requested $50,000 each. These claims were both denied.David Bibo (David Omori Bibo CRD#: 2602436) is a registered broker currently employed with WESTERN INTERNATIONAL SECURITIES, INC. (CRD#: 39262) of San Jose, CA. He was previously employed with Myclearing.Com (CRD#:104161) and Interfirst Capital Corporation (CRD#:7659), both of Los Angeles, and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (CRD#:7691) of New York, NY. He has been in the industry since 1995. Continue reading ›

Wayne Miller (Wayne Ivan Miller CRD#: 4813645) is a registered broker and previously registered investment advisor currently employed with Aeon Capital Inc. (CRD#: 164004) of Scottsdale, AZ. His previous employers include American Asset Advisory, LLC (CRD#:168444), Accelerated Capital Group (CRD#:41270, expelled by FINRA on 11/26/2019) and Longview Financial Group, Inc. (CRD#:38286), also of Scottsdale. He has been in the industry since 2004.  Wayne Miller Disclosures  Miller is the subject of eight disclosures, seven of which are related to his tenure at the now-defunct  Accelerated Capital Group. He was named in these disputes due to being named “owner and control person” while at ACG until he left on 2/2/2018. Miller left the firm more than a year before the firm was expelled by FINRA for misleading advertising and failing to establish and maintain a supervisory system. Before its expulsion, the firm was subjected to censures and fines for misconduct.  The most recent was filed on 9/25/2020, and alleged “unsuitable placements of alternative investments,” with requested damages of $13,204,427.00. Miller was not the broker of record, and denies the allegations. This claim is pending.Wayne Miller (Wayne Ivan Miller CRD#: 4813645) is a registered broker and previously registered investment advisor currently employed with Aeon Capital Inc. (CRD#: 164004) of Scottsdale, AZ. His previous employers include American Asset Advisory, LLC (CRD#:168444), Accelerated Capital Group (CRD#:41270, expelled by FINRA on 11/26/2019) and Longview Financial Group, Inc. (CRD#:38286), also of Scottsdale. He has been in the industry since 2004. Continue reading ›

Keith Simmons (Keith Frederick Simmons CRD: #730619) is a broker and investment advisor with Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (CRD#:7691) of Miami, FL. He has been with Merrill Lynch since 1981, and is registered in 30 states.  Simmons is the subject of a customer dispute filed on 5/29/2020 by a client who alleges “unsuitable investment recommendations.”  The client requests damages of $8,000,000. No additional information is available. The dispute is currently listed as “pending.”  A previous customer dispute filed on 12/2/2009 alleges “misrepresentation regarding the liquidity and risk of auction rate securities in June 2008.”  This case involved the sale of auction rate securities.  Merrill Lynch settled for $300,000, the cost of repurchasing these securities. The case was settled to avoid the continued cost and uncertainty of litigation. Simmons took no part in the settlement.  A customer dispute filed on 10/17/1997 alleged that Simmons “oversold” a client’s shares without authorization. The client requested reinstatement of the shares, worth $9,000. Merrill Lynch settled the matter for $9,000 to avoid litigation.Keith Simmons (Keith Frederick Simmons CRD: #730619) is a broker and investment advisor with Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (CRD#:7691) of Miami, FL. He has been with Merrill Lynch since 1981, and is registered in 30 states. Continue reading ›

Jeffrey Leach (Jeffrey Harold Leach CRD: 3231849, aka “Jeff Leach”) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed by Morgan Stanley (CRD#:149777) of Naples, FL. Previous employers include Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated (CRD#:8209) and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (CRD#:7059) both of Atlanta, GA, and Conseco Securities, Inc. (CRD#:29367) of Carmel, IN. He has been in the industry since 1999. Two customer disputes, filed on 5/5/2020 and 1/3/2020, allege “unsuitability” on the part of Leach. The most recent dispute claims unsuitability towards investments in the energy sector, and requests damages of $500,000. The earlier dispute claims unsuitability with respect to investments made from September of 2018 through December of 2019. Both claims are currently listed as “pending.”  A previous dispute filed on 4/4/2016 listed similar allegations for a customer’s accounts from 2014 to 2016. The client requested damages of $1,500,000.00, and Morgan Stanley settled the claim for $165,000.00 to avoid litigation.Jeffrey Leach (Jeffrey Harold Leach CRD: 3231849, aka “Jeff Leach”) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed by Morgan Stanley (CRD#:149777) of Naples, FL. Previous employers include Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated (CRD#:8209) and Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (CRD#:7059) both of Atlanta, GA, and Conseco Securities, Inc. (CRD#:29367) of Carmel, IN. He has been in the industry since 1999. Continue reading ›

Christ Baltas (Christ Elias Baltas CRD: 2570499) is a former registered broker whose last known employer was Worden Capital Management LLC (CRD#:148366) of Melville, NY. His previous employers include Wilmington Capital Securities, LLC (CRD#:133839) also of Melville, Kovack Securities Inc. (CRD#:44848) of Fort Lauderdale FL, and Quest Capital Strategies, Inc. (CRD#:16783) of Laguna Hills, CA. He has been in the industry since 1995.  In August of 2020, FINRA sent Baltas a notice to appear for on-the-record testimony in relation to its investigation of his supervision of a registered representative. This representative had made trading recommendations that were potentially unsuitable while Baltas was a supervisor. Although Baltas acknowledged receipt of FINRA's notice, he notified staff that he would not be appearing for testimony at any time.Christ Baltas (Christ Elias Baltas CRD: 2570499) is a former registered broker whose last known employer was Worden Capital Management LLC (CRD#:148366) of Melville, NY. His previous employers include Wilmington Capital Securities, LLC (CRD#:133839) also of Melville, Kovack Securities Inc. (CRD#:44848) of Fort Lauderdale FL, and Quest Capital Strategies, Inc. (CRD#:16783) of Laguna Hills, CA. He has been in the industry since 1995. Continue reading ›

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