Blog by BIll Singer Esq WEEK IN REVIEW

July 21, 2018
An angry Morgan Stanley customer had what he deemed a dormant account. They didn't give me any advice for 16 years, he complained. But they sure as hell racked up charges for doing nothing, he fumed. All of which prompted him to file a FINRA arbitration seeking damages. The litigation cards get the old Wall Street shuffle. Place your bets on the customer, the broker-dealer, and the stockbroker.

Morgan Stanley Broker Fined And Suspended For NSF Wires Into His Personal Account ( Blog)
Embedded in popular culture is the dubious moral proposition that "ya do what ya gotta do." This mind-set often manifests itself when we decide that something is "wrong" but immediately follow that thought with "but." And don't even pretend that you haven't come to that threshold at various points in your life and stepped over. Some of us quickly step back. Others stand still. Others move further into the darkness to a place from which there is no return. In a recent FINRA regulatory settlement, we got a guy who sent wires from one of his bank accounts to another at a time when he didn't have covering funds. This bit of financial sleight-of-hand got him fired by his employer. Then it got him fined and suspended by Wall Street's self regulator. Blog publisher Bill Singer doesn't excuse or defend the stockbroker. That much is clear. Bill does ask some uncomfortable questions and provides a number of unsettling answers.
In the Matter of the Application of Mark E. Laccetti, CPA For Review of Disciplinary Action Taken by the PCAOB  (Order Vacating Disciplinary Action and Cancelling Sanction, '34 Act Rel. No.83659, Admin Proc. File No. 3-16430 / July 17, 2018) In response to the DCCir's order, the SEC ordered that "the PCAOB's disciplinary action be vacated and the sanctions imposed be cancelled."

87 Year Old Stifel Nicolaus Customer, His Stockbroker, and 33 Blank Account Checks ( Blog)
Let's see if you can guess where this fact pattern is going and how it will end. We got an 87 year old customer. The customer gives to his stockbroker blank checks to be drawn against his brokerage account. Those checks are to be used only in the event that the elderly customer can't write out the checks for the sole purpose of paying his caregivers. Hmmm . . . what could possibly go wrong?

Crowdfunding Portal StartEngine Loses Customer Arbitration ( Blog)
Another day, another FINRA arbitration, and another complaint from Blog's publisher Bill Singer, Esq about the lack of quality control over FINRA's arbitration decisions. Pointedly, Bill cites the lack of content and context sufficient to render a decision intelligible. On top of all of that, today's featured arbitration involves two interesting quirks: the Claimant is a FINRA funding portal member and the arbitration forum waived the firm's member surcharge and fees.