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Articles Tagged with reits

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Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224-300x224Katherine Greer Nishnic (CRD #2499553, a/k/a Katherine Greer Martinson, Katherine Diane Nishnic, Katherine G. Nishnic) is a currently registered broker employed with Centaurus Financial, Inc. (CRD #30833) of Lexington, SC. Her previous employers include J.P. Turner & Company, L.L.C. (CRD #43177), Gunnallen Financial, Inc (CRD #17609) and First Allied Securities, Inc. (CRD #32444), also of Lexington, SC. She has been in the industry since 1994.

Nishnic is the subject of three disclosures, all recent customer disputes. The first was filed on 11/18/2018, alleging that Nishnic made unsuitable recommendations as well as “other allegations” that were not disclosed. The client is asking for damages of $100,000. Nishnic denies the allegations, and indicates that this may be a client’s family creating the dispute. This case is currently “pending.”

The next customer dispute was filed on 8/21/2017, alleging that the products sold to the client while she and her late husband were customers of Nishnic’s at a different brokerage were unsuitable. This client requests damages of $95,000. Nishnic also denies these allegations. The case was ultimately closed without any action.

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Wenjinn James Chang (CRD #4536266) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed with Independent Financial Group, LLC (CRD #7717) of Rockville, MD. His previous employers include Ameritas Investment Corp. (CRD #14869), also of Rockville, AXA Advisors, LLC (CRD #6627) of New York, NY, and PFS INVESTMENTS INC. (CRD #10111) of Duluth, GA. He has been in the industry since 2002.

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224Two customer disputes were filed this year against Chang. The most recent was filed on 10/15/2018, requesting damages of $50,000. The customer alleges that Chang over-concentrated in non-traded REITS that were unsuitable and caused losses to the account. Chang denies the allegations, and the firm plans to defend the claim.

His prior dispute was filed on 9/11/2018, alleging that Chang “failed to advise of the risks of the investments made and that the Claimant has suffered losses as a result of the investments made.” Although the client requested damages of $75,000, the firm settled the claim for $10,000 to avoid the costs of litigation. The firm also stated that the settlement was neither an admission of guilt or liability, and there were no facts to support the allegations.

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Back in October, we told you about Kyusun Kim (CRD #2864085), a broker who was barred by FINRA after it was discovered he approached individuals who were near or at retirement age, and urged them to liquidate their pensions to invest in “alternative investments.” These investments included risky, non-traded real estate investment trusts (REITs.)

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224-300x224BrokerCheck now reports that Sandlapper Wealth Management, LLC has discharged him from their employment as of 8/31/2018 after he was barred by FINRA.

The allegations against Kim included wrongful conduct, breaches of fiduciary duty, contract and conduct, violations of securities laws, fraud, financial elder abuse, negligent misrepresentation, inappropriate investments and unsuitable recommendations, as well as one allegation of forged signatures.

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Silver Law Group filed a claim against Arete Wealth Management, LLC alleging Arete’s broker recommended numerous unsuitable non-traded REITs and leveraged ETNs and ETFs to our elderly client.

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224According to the FINRA arbitration complaint, the elderly Claimant entrusted the entirety of her retirement portfolio to Arete Wealth Management and its broker. The broker proceeded to recommend the senior Claimant invest approximately half a million dollars in various illiquid, non-traded REITs. Among other non-traded REITs, the Arete Wealth Management broker recommended the Claimant invest in American Finance Trust, Hospitality Investors Trust, benefit Partners Realty Trust, and FS Energy and Power Fund, according to the FINRA arbitration complaint.

In addition to Arete Wealth Management’s unsuitable recommendations to invest in non-traded REITs, the Arete Wealth Management broker also invested the elderly Claimant’s brokerage account in risky investments such as leveraged ETFs and ETNs, according to the securities arbitration claim. These leveraged ETFs and ETNs are typically meant to be held for no more than one day. The FINRA arbitration complaint alleges the Arete Wealth Management broker held them for far longer than one day – in some cases months. Claimant, according to the securities arbitration claim, lost a significant amount of money in her Arete Wealth Management brokerage accounts.

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Stephen Joe Williams (CRD #2395948) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed by NEXT FINANCIAL GROUP, INC. (CRD #46214) of Madison, AL, since 2007. His previous employers are Securities Service Network, Inc. (CRD #13318) of Huntsville, AL, Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. (CRD #6694) of St. Petersburg, FL, and Edward Jones (CRD #250) of St. Louis, MO. He has been in the industry since 1994.

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224Williams’ most current customer dispute is pending, and was filed on 2/26/2018. The case centers on allegations that during June of 2008, Williams recommended non-traded REITS (real estate investment trusts) and didn’t disclose the nature and risks of these kinds of private securities. The customer is requesting damages of $350,000.

On 2/2/2018, another customer’s attorney filed a similar allegation with a 2008 time frame. Williams allegedly solicited the client to invest $50,000 in UDF III without informing him of the inherent risks of this illiquid investment. Although the customer requested remediation of $50,000, the dispute was denied.

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Bradley Taylor Pace (CRD #2097427) is a previously registered broker whose last employer was LPL Financial LLC (CRD #6413) of Orlando, FL. His previous employers include A.J. Pace & Co., Inc. (CRD #24228), also of Orlando, TD Waterhouse Investor Services, Inc. (CRD #7870) of Omaha, NE, and Quick & Reilly, Inc. (CRD #11217) of New York, NY. No current employment information is available. He began in the industry in 1991.

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224FINRA sent Pace a request for information, which he did not respond to by the requested deadline. FINRA then suspended Pace, indefinitely and in all capacities, effective 06/28/2018. Should Pace fail to request termination of his suspension within a 3-month time frame, he will be barred by FINRA from any association with any FINRA member firm. There is no indication of what prompted the request, or if any complaints were involved.

Pace is also the subject of a customer dispute, filed on 1/26/2018. In it, the customer alleged “unsuitability relating to the purchase of a REIT investment and misrepresentation relating to the liquidity of the REIT investment.” However, the claim was denied, and no additional information is available.

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Charles Lewis Bloom (CRD #4144108) is a former registered broker last employed by Chelsea Financial Services (CRD #47770) of Royal Palm Beach, FL. His previous employers include International Assets Advisory, LLC (CRD #10645) and IAA Financial LLC (CRD #6578) of West Palm Beach, FL, and U.S. Brokerage, Inc. (CRD #39307) of Wellington, FL. No current employment information is available. He has been in the industry since 2000.

FINRA began an investigation into Bloom’s trading practices in October of 2017 after allegations of unsuitable trading in at least three customer accounts. FINRA then requested Bloom to appear to give on-the-record testimony to FINRA regarding the investigation. He declined, and stated in a phone call that he would not give testimony at any time. On 7/17/2018, after signing an Acceptance, Waiver & Consent (AWC) letter, Bloom was indefinitely barred by FINRA effective immediately.

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224Shortly after the FINRA action, a customer dispute was filed on 11/8/2017, alleging that Bloom misrepresented and made unsuitable recommendations with regard to a REIT (real estate investment trust.) The case is currently “pending,” and the damages requested are $99,326.84.

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Would you listen if a company selling its stock asked you to reject a buyer’s offer?

That’s the conundrum facing stockholders of American Finance Trust, Inc. (NASDAQ: AFIN.) This REIT was formerly not traded, and sponsored by AR Global. The company has 75% of its Class A and former Class B-1 shares, 400,000, on the NASDAQ. The remaining Class B-2 shares are expected to be listed in January 2019.

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224McKenzie Realty Capital Inc. made, for the second time, an unsolicited tender offer to purchase up to 400,000 shares of each class of the company’s common stock. AFIN’s board is urging stockholders to reject McKenzie’s offer.  However, both sides offer reasons for their recommendation.

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Silver Law Group is investigating former Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. (CRD# 6363) broker Brian T. Perry (CRD# 2874937) after FINRA permanently barred him.

According to Perry’s FINRA BrokerCheck report, FINRA permanently barred Perry in December 2016 from acting as a broker or otherwise associating with firms that sell securities to the public.  FINRA barred Perry because he failed to respond to a FINRA inquiry.

Perry’s permanent bar follows a customer complaint in October 2016 alleging Perry made unauthorized trades, failed to follow transaction instructions, and provided poor service which resulted in losses.  The claim, according to the BrokerCheck report, was denied.

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Are (or Were) Unsuitable Non-Traded REITs in Your Portfolio? on silverlaw.com

Learn the details about this vehicle, and why it may be an unsuitable investment

REITs, or real estate investment trusts, are companies that own real estate-related assets. These may include office parks, hotels, homes, or even related debt like mortgages. REITs are an attractive investment because they can often provide a steady stream of income to investors, as the IRS mandates that they distribute at least 90% of their taxable income to shareholders.

Most REITs are publicly registered and publicly traded on major stock exchanges – however, some are not publically traded. These non-exchange traded REITs are usually managed by a private investment manager, and they can be much riskier than their tradable cousins.

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