Blog by Bill Singer Esq WEEK IN REVIEW

May 21, 2022
Congress has given the Securities and Exchange Commission substantial power to enforce the nation's securities laws. It often acts as both prosecutor and judge, and its decisions have broad consequences for personal liberty and property. But the Constitution constrains the SEC's powers by protecting individual rights and the prerogatives of the other branches of government. This case is about the nature and extent of those constraints in securities fraud cases in which the SEC seeks penalties.
At first blush, a recent FINRA AWC seems to be piling it on against a former Morgan Stanley rep over some silliness involving unapproved emails about a private placement offered by the firm. It's not like the rep was pushing an outside deal involving a algorithm-based meme-stock trading program funded by a crypto-mining platform powered by municipal waste. Yeah, I know, where can you get into that hot deal, right? But, getting back to the seemingly beleaguered rep, as it turns out, FINRA was justified in fining and suspending him; and Morgan Stanley may have been on similarly firm ground when it discharged the employee. What could go so horribly wrong? Read today's blog.
In "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock," T.S. Eliot laments: "I have measured out my life with coffee spoons." In a recent federal lawsuit involving a $15 million claim against Edward Jones, a District Court laments that the Plaintiff failed to measure out his Complaint in numbered paragraphs or different counts. Alas, the Court lacks the lilting prose of the poet.