Blog by Bill Singer Esq WEEK IN REVIEW

November 24, 2018
Much as a fish wouldn't know how good the water is until it's gasping in a fishnet, we don't really know our blessings until we are broke or in jail or stricken by illness, weather, violence, or idiotic leaders. We wouldn't know to be grateful that none of those have yet happened to us if we couldn't imagine the alternate realities of those unlucky bastards to whom they have. Blog readers may be unaware of our companion Securities Industry Commentator, which is a daily legal, regulatory, and compliance feed curated by veteran Wall Street lawyer Bill Singer. Today, a lot of folks will be going to the bathroom at noon but never returning to their desks in order to get an early jump on the Thanksgiving holiday. In recognition of that early exodus from Wall Street, the Blog offers two extracts from Securities Industry Commentator (which, if you're wondering, also has lots of very serious stuff but we thought it would be better to tease new readers with some fun bits).

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Timing in life is everything, and all the more so when it comes to litigation. The sooner a complaint is filed, the more likely it is that an unhappy brokerage customer will be viewed as sincere. Unfortunately, sometimes a gruntled customer just doesn't know that she should be disgruntled. Maybe she was defrauded by her stockbroker. Maybe she was lied to by the brokerage firm. Maybe she misunderstood her statements. Similarly, a stockbroker may think that he's doing a great job and his clients are a happy and contented bunch but, wham, out of nowhere, he learns that complaints are coming in about trades that were done many months or years ago. In today's featured FINRA arbitration, we have a stockbroker who seems to have been on the receiving end of some stale customer complaints. The stockbroker let those complaints sit on his industry record for about a decade; and during that period in Wall Street's cellar, those wines didn't improve with age but turned to vinegar. Rather than throw the vinegar out, the stockbroker turned it into salad dressing.
You'd sort of think -- sort of expect -- that as among FINRA's BrokerCheck and a FINRA Arbitration Decision and a TSSB Disciplinary Order that we would know what was happening. The TSSB Disciplinary Order states that Respondent Gable applied for investment adviser representative registration with Texas and that the state granted his registration but then immediately suspended him for 150 days. Notably absent from the TSSB Disciplinary Order was the imposition of any fines or other monetary sanctions. Similarly absent from the picture is any FINRA regulatory action, which implies that all the fuss about the block trading may not have been all that big a deal. Which might also explain why Texas granted Gable's IAR registration. Which might also explain why three FINRA arbitrators told Claimant Cambridge to take a hike. Which doesn't even remotely begin to explain what the hell is going on here. Because something is happening here but you don't know what it is. Do you, Mr. Jones?