Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. (“Oppenheimer & Co”) (CRD# 249) has many different complaints filed by FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), state regulatory organizations, and investors such as yourself. At the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, we have investigated Oppenheimer & Co, its regulatory and customer complaints, and have also represented investors with claims of fraud, negligence, and breach of fiduciary duty against this organization and its financial advisors.
If you believe you have a claim against Oppenheimer & Co, you should strongly consider hiring an investment fraud lawyer. You should not wait until it’s too late to file a claim. The Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., offers free consultations. Give us a call at 800-732-2889. Let’s discuss your case and see what we can do to help you get the compensation you need and deserve.
Can I Sue Oppenheimer & Co?
If you’ve lost money caused by Oppenheimer & Co and/or its employees’ misconduct then the answer is, YES, you can sue Oppenheimer & Co but the odds are you signed away your right to sue in court and agreed to resolve your dispute in a FINRA arbitration proceeding. Attorney Robert Wayne Pearce has over 40 years of personal experience in FINRA arbitration proceedings and knows very well how you can not only sue Oppenheimer & Co in FINRA arbitration proceedings, but WIN that arbitration. The easiest way to know if you have a viable case against Oppenheimer & Co is to call Attorney Pearce at our office at 800-732-2889.
What is Oppenheimer & Co?
Oppenheimer & Co (CRD# 249) is a registered broker-dealer. It operates as a full-service independent broker-dealer, providing a range of financial products and services to individual investors and financial advisors.
As a registered broker-dealer, Oppenheimer & Co is subject to regulations and oversight by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). It is required to comply with industry standards and regulations to ensure the protection of its clients’ interests.
A failure to comply with industry standards by either its brokers or the firm itself can result in disciplinary actions, fines, or other penalties imposed by regulatory authorities.
Oppenheimer & Co Has Many Different Regulatory Problems
Oppenheimer & Co’ rapid growth has not been without consequences. There have been approximately 280 state and self-regulatory body disclosure events; that is, final and formal proceedings initiated by a regulatory authority (e.g., a state or federal securities agency like the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or self-regulatory body like the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for a violation(s) of investment-related rules or regulations. In addition, there have been hundreds of customer complaints filed against Oppenheimer & Co for misconduct by its securities sales and investment advisory representatives that are not reported by the firm on its Central Depository Record.
We have reported and written about these regulatory problems and customer complaints over many years. Oppenheimer & Co is a repeat offender: there are over 280 FINRA-reported disciplinary proceedings citing the firm with one form of supervisory lapses or another.
A Brief Overview of Some of the Regulatory Problems Oppenheimer & Co Has Faced Over the Years*
Oppenheimer & Co has been repeatedly censured, warned, and fined multi-millions of dollars for its own misconduct and failure to supervise its army of financial advisors.* A few of the notable FINRA Sanctions for its Supervisory Failures are below:
Oppenheimer & Co. Sanctioned by FINRA for Improper Sales Practices Relating to Unit Investment Trusts
Brief Overview: On December 30, 2019, Oppenheimer & Co. faced sanctions from FINRA for unlawful sales practices involving Unit Investment Trusts (UITs). The brokerage firm was fined $800,000 and ordered to pay $3.87 million in restitution to customers. The alleged misconduct centered around short-term transactions in UITs, which are designed as long-term investment vehicles but resulted in high commissions to customers.
During the relevant period, Oppenheimer executed over $6.4 billion in UIT transactions, generating more than $68.6 million in sales charges. Some transactions involved early rollovers, where UITs were sold more than 100 days before maturity and proceeds used to purchase new UITs. Series-to-series early rollovers were also observed, where customers sold UITs before maturity and used proceeds to buy subsequent series with similar objectives. UITs typically have a fixed investment portfolio, and investors know what they are investing in for the duration of their investment.
Oppenheimer’s sanctions were part of FINRA’s broader scrutiny of brokerage firms regarding short-term trading of UITs, which produced excessive commissions for financial advisors while providing minimal gains for clients. UITs are known to produce above-average commissions, and financial advisors have a legal obligation to recommend suitable investments for clients.
Oppenheimer & Co. Sanctioned for Reporting Failures and Overcharging Customers
Brief Overview: FINRA sanctioned Oppenheimer & Co. with $3.4 million for reporting failures, late filings, and not providing documents in an arbitration case against a former registered representative. The firm was also fined for overcharging 825 customers $1,010,327 for mutual fund shares due to not applying the appropriate fee waiver.
Oppenheimer & Co. Penalized for Selling Non-Traditional ETFs Without Proper Supervision
Brief Overview: Oppenheimer & Co. faced a $2.25 million fine and restitution of over $716,000 for selling non-traditional ETFs to retail customers without reasonable supervision and recommending unsuitable ETFs. The firm failed to enforce its policies and allowed representatives to solicit and execute non-traditional ETF transactions not meeting the stated criteria.
Oppenheimer & Co. Admits Wrongdoing and Settles Charges for Selling Unregistered Penny Stocks
Brief Overview: Oppenheimer & Co. paid $10 million to settle SEC charges for selling unregistered penny stocks and engaging in unregistered sales of billions of shares of penny stocks. The firm was liable for aiding illegal activities of a customer and engaging in unregistered sales, resulting in $588,400 in commissions.
Oppenheimer & Co. Fined for Selling Unregistered Penny Stocks and AML Program Failures
Brief Overview: Oppenheimer & Co. received a $1,425,000 fine for selling unregistered penny stocks and failing to implement an adequate anti-money laundering (AML) program to detect suspicious transactions. Despite red flags, the firm sold more than a billion shares of unregistered speculative penny stocks through its branch offices between 2008 and 2010.
*Above are only some of the regulatory disciplinary actions filed against Oppenheimer & Co by FINRA. NASSA and other state securities regulator investigations and enforcement actions account for another 280 BrokerCheck disclosures.
Oppenheimer & Co Customer Complaints
There have been scores of customer complaints filed against Oppenheimer & Co stockbrokers and investment advisors over the years. We have launched many investigations of current and former Oppenheimer & Co advisors:
- David Krumrey of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Edward Winokur of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc
- Matthew Gaer of Aegis Capital Corp.
- Chad Allen of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Alfred Bonardi of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Richard Elkin of Oppenheimer Co
- David Bittermann of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc
- Demos Argyros of Oppenheimer & Co
- Steven Gordon of RBC Capital Markets
- Alberto Castaner Of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Homer Smith Formerly With Ameriprise Financial Services
- Gabriel Block of First Standard Financial Company, LLC
- Dennis Ayer of Hilltop Securities
- Mark Barrand of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC
- Diana Ceylan of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc
- Michael Greenfield of Newbridge Securities Corporation
- Luis Rosario of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc
- Adam Elgert of Wells Fargo Clearing Services
- Stewart Teichman of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Melissa Pavone of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Philip Noto formerly with First Standard Financial Company
- Warren Rowe formerly with Oppenheimer & Co.
- Maurice Stuffmann of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Robert Hord of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Yan Binder of Morgan Stanley
- James Fahey of Wellington Shields & Co.
- Jose Ferrari of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Andrei Livadariu of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Matthew McGuirk of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Brenda O’Brien of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Luigi Mancusi of Sanctuary Advisors
- David Pawloski of Cantella & Co.
- Gustavo Miramontes of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Susan Stephens of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Sayke Reilley of Oppenheimer & Co.
- James Yoo of Oppenheimer & Co.
- Annette Blank formerly with Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- David Brandt of Oppenheimer & Co., Inc.
- Eddy Gutierrez of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Ernest Mishne formerly with Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Ernest Mishne of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Florindo Volpacchio formerly with Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Fred Berens of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Horacio Gomez-Rabago of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Jaime Cosculluela formerly with Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- James Allen of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- James Louderbaugh of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- James Ries of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Jerry Romano of Financial Northeastern Securities, Inc.
- Jonathan Bever of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC
- Lawrence Margolin of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC
- Marc Menton formerly with Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Mark Frommer of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Matthew Platnico of Allied Millennial Partners, Inc.
- Peter Wagner of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Russell Ogan of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Scott Turcott of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Julie Jones formerly with Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Andrew Brookman of Aegis Capital Corp
- Adam Jacobs of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Paul McFeeley of Hightower Securities, LLC
- Larry Schwartzman of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Leonard Silvester of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Ann Greene of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Gregory Iglow of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Michael Rosenmayer of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
- Benjamin Davis of Oppenheimer & Co. Inc.
If you have lost money investing with any of these Oppenheimer & Co advisors or others within this brokerage firm, it’s important that you reach out to an investment loss attorney quickly because the statutes of limitations can bar your claims. Call us at 800-732-2889.
Why Does Oppenheimer & Co Have So Many Regulatory Problems And Customer Complaints?
Independent broker-dealers are notorious for their lax supervisory practices and procedures. The business model of these franchise type operations is to open many offices nationwide for steady growth of fixed monthly revenues without the costs attendant to a full-service branch office with on-site manager, compliance officer and operation personnel. The registered representatives of these independent broker-dealers generally operate as separately incorporated businesses. They are not employees of the broker-dealer and therefore not controlled in the same manner as full-service brokerage firm representatives. The registered representatives control their structure and costs to maximize profits and often leave the protection of investors’ rights and interests as their lowest priority.
The typical supervisory organization of independent broker-dealer operations is to have other independent contractors operate Offices of Supervisory Jurisdiction (OSJs) to monitor the registered representatives from geographically remote offices and then report to the main franchisor’s compliance office at national headquarters. The supervisors at the OSJs are not employees of the franchisor and often run their own brokerage, insurance and other businesses. They are not devoted full-time supervisors of the smaller branch offices. Consequently, OSJ managers cannot and do not supervise the day-to-day operations of the registered representatives of these Independent broker-dealers.
Generally, there is no immediate review of new accounts opened, securities transactions, business records, cash or securities receipts and deliveries, correspondence and business activities unrelated to the securities brokerage operation at these independent brokerage firms. The lax supervision leaves investors who have transferred their accounts to the smaller independent broker-dealer vulnerable to sales of securities that have not been reviewed or authorized by anyone other than the sales representative earning a commission. There may be no one onsite to detect forgeries of clients’ signatures on documents, the placement of inaccurate information about a client’s investment objectives and financial condition to document the suitability of a particular investment recommendation. Oftentimes there is no daily review of sales literature and client correspondence to protect against misrepresentations and misleading statements being made to investors. In fact, it is not unusual for there to be only one compliance audit visit per year at many of these offices.
These Independent brokerage business operations are worrisome to the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), which has documented more instances of sales abuse and consequently investor losses at these firms than the traditional brokerage firms with branch offices with on-site managers and compliance personnel.
Did Oppenheimer & Co Advisor Misconduct Cause You Investment Losses?
When financial advisor misconduct has caused you to lose substantial value to your investment accounts, you have the right to seek reimbursement from the responsible parties. Oppenheimer & Co is responsible like any employer for its financial advisors acts and omissions. In addition, it has an independent duty to supervise its stockbrokers and investment advisors. These cases can be extremely complex, and so having the support of a reputable attorney who is experienced in recovering investment losses for investors is key to your success. Many customers make the mistake of contacting Oppenheimer & Co without representation with an attorney about their complaints and have their complaints denied.
Related Read: Can You Sue Your Brokerage Firm?
Consult With An Attorney Who Recovers Investment Losses Caused By Oppenheimer & Co Today!
The investment loss attorneys at The Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., have helped countless investors over the last 40 years recover the losses from their investment accounts that were caused by broker negligence or misconduct. The firm has extensive experience with Oppenheimer & Co cases, and Attorney Pearce is committed to seeing that those responsible for the losses you have suffered are held fully accountable.
Give us a call at 800-732-2889. Let’s discuss your case and see what we can do to help you get the compensation you need and deserve.