Category Archives: North American Securities Administration Association (NASAA)

Update March 2016: SEC Alert Warning Investors to Be Wary of Oil & Gas Investments

 MARCH 2016-After the dramatic collapse of oil prices in the past year, it is apparent that a 2013 SEC investor alert, which we discussed nearly three years ago, was something investor would have been wise to have heeded.

Brokers and financial advisors were on notice of the alerts from regulators when making investment recommendations to their investor customers.

OPTIONS FOR INVESTORS WITH OIL AND GAS INVESTMENT LOSSES.

If you suffered significant losses in oil and gas investments made upon the recommendation of your broker, you may be able to recover damages through FINRA arbitration. Call to speak to an experienced securities attorney. See contact information below.

ORIGINAL POST FROM MAY 2013

On May 2, 2013, the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) issued and investor alert on considerations investor should be aware of when investing in private oil &  gas offerings. Follow this link to access the entire document on the SEC website. This warning is much like a similar warning from the North American Securities Administrators Association in March 2013.

The SEC warns that investing in any private security offering contains unique risks, but oil and gas offerings have additional risks to consider. They list these common red flags often used to tout these investments to potential investors:

  • Sales pitches referring to recent news events like high oil or gas prices.
  • “Can’t miss” wells and “guaranteed” returns, including claims that major oil and gas companies are drilling nearby.
  • Abnormally high rates of return.
  • Unsolicited materials.
  • Sales tactics that pressure you to decide, like “limited” or “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity.
  • Sales pitches touting new technology, especially if it relates to
    getting higher production out of low-producing wells (sometimes called
    “stripper” wells).
  • Salesperson claims to be an investor.
  • Being asked to sign documents acknowledging that the securities laws do not apply to the investment.

A listing of some of the oil & gas private placements recently offered to investors:

  • Adageo Energy
  • Alliance Petroleum Corporation
  • Alpha Energy
  • Atlas Energy L.P.
  • Aztec Oil & Gas
  • Black Diamond Energy
  • Bradford Energy
  • Catalyst Energy
  • Gulf Coast Rig & Equipment
  • Discovery Oil & Gas Partners
  • Mewbourne Energy
  • Noble Royalties
  • Penneco Drilling
  • Reef Oil & Gas Partnerships
  • Ridgewood Energy Fund
  • Sandridge Energy
  • South Central Region Private Limited Partnership
  • South Central
  • Texas Energy
  • Tidal Petroleum
  • U.S. Energy
  • Waveland Capital
  • Waveland Oil & Gas

If you believe you are a victim of stockbroker fraud or negligence, you may be able to recover losses through FINRA arbitration which is much quicker and less costly than litigation in court. Most cases are done on a contingent fee basis and are generally completed in a year or less.

If you have questions or complaints about losses in your brokerage account, call us for a no charge consultation.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Maine Securities Regulator to Testify to Congress About Financial Exploitation of Senior Citizens

February 3, 2015-Augusta, Maine

Judith Shaw, administrator of Maine’s Office of Securities, is scheduled to testify before the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging according to the Portland Press Herald.

Shaw, who is also president-elect of the North American Securities Administration Association, was invited by Maine Republican Senator Susan Collins and will discuss Senior$afe , a collaborative effort by Maine regulators, financial institutions and legal organizations designed to protect seniors from financial abuse.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

South Florida is “Hot Spot” For Troubled Stock Brokers-Wall Street Journal

November 12, 2014– According to a story published in The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) today, South Floridians, especially elderly & wealthy retirees,  have plenty to worry about when it comes to stockbrokers with a troubled disciplinary/regulatory history.

“Jackals always follow the herd.” See this for the observations of author and satirist Carl Hiaasen on how “bad brokers” seek out the gathering spots of wealth retirees.

The WSJ concludes, and rightly so, that troubled brokers tend to cluster in same areas where the wealthy and elderly reside. That ‘free meal’ at the investment seminar may end up costing more than you think. According to the WSJ, brokers who troll for clients with dinners are knows as “plate-lickers” and are also the subject of a FINRA Investor Alert. 

Analyzing data on some 630,000 brokers, the WSJ identified 16  areas nationwide where the “red flags” for brokers in those areas substantially exceeds the national average, sometimes by as much as 300%. “Red flags” are things most investors would like to know about their broker before handing over their hard earned nest egg; Things such as state and federal regulatory actions, criminal charges, client complaints, recent bankruptcies and terminations.

The five areas in south Florida (which has 4 out the top ten) identified by the WSJ are:

  • Ft. Lauderdale, Boca Raton, including Delray Beach– Ranked #1 on the WSJ list. Brokers with 3 or more red flags is 2.9 times the national average.
  • Sarasota– Ranked #3 on the WSJ list. Brokers with 3 or more red flags is 2.6 times the national average.
  • Collier and Lee Counties, Florida– Ranked #4 on the WSJ list. Brokers with 3 or more red flags is 2.6 times the national average.
  • Treasure  Coast, Florida-Ranked #5 on the WSJ list. Brokers with 3 or more red flags is 2.6 times the national average.
  • Southern Miami-Dade County, Florida-Ranked #11 on the WSJ list. Brokers with 3 or more red flags is 1.8 times the national average.

Before opening an account, wouldn’t you like to know if your broker recently filed for personal bankruptcy, or had been the subject of numerous customer complaints, or had been fired from one or more of his prior employments?

See our discussion on how to research the regulatory background of brokers and brokerage firms to protect yourself and your loved ones. It costs nothing and can save you everything.

Rex Securities Law provides nationwide representation to investors seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney. Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Rex Securities Law

561 391 1900

NASAA Advisory Council on Senior Issues/Diminished Capacity Appointed

The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) announced on September 16, 2014 formation of an advisory council to help inform the recently formed Committee of Senior Issues and Diminished Capacity.

Members of the Advisory Council are:

  • Georgia Anetzberger, Gerontological Society of America
  • Marin Gibson, Securities Industry and Financial Markets Assoc.
  • Nancy Heffner, Financial Services Institute
  • Skip Humphrey, former Minnesota Atty. General
  • David Laibson, Harvard University
  • Ron Long, Wells Fargo Advisors
  • Brett Kandt, National Assoc. of Prosecutor Coordinators
  • Naomi Karpp, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Office of Older Americans
  • Daniel Marson, Alzheimer’s Disease Center, Univ of Alabama
  • Mark Peterson, American Institute of CPAs
  • Charles Sabatino, ABA Commission on Law & Aging
  • Lori Schock, U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission
  • Jean Setzfand, AARP
  • Neil Simon, Investment Adviser Association
  • Brooke Stringer, National Assoc. of Insurance Commisisoners
  • Geraldine Walsh, FINRA Foundation

NASAA had announced in August  that since 2008,  34% of securities enforcement actions have involved senior citizens.

Rex Securities Law provides nationwide representation to investors seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.  Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Rex Securities Law

561 391 1900

SEC Issues Investor Bulletin:How to Check Out Your Financial Professional

The Securities & Exchange Commission’s  (SEC) Office of Investor Education and Advocacy issues alerts and bulletins from time to time designed to offer resources to address problems investors may face. Here is a link to that site.

In a recent bulletin, they provide resources to assist investors in checking out a financial professional’s background.  The SEC notes that “Even if a close friend or family member recommends a financial professional, you should still check out that person for signs of potential problems.”

Current information, such as where the broker is presently working, whether he/she has ever been suspended/sanctioned and qualifications can be reviewed in a number of places, including:

See this for our discussion on how to protect yourself and your loved ones when choosing a broker or brokerage firm.

Rex Securities Law provides nationwide representation to investors seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.  Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Rex Securities Law

561 391 1900

NASAA to Focus on Investor Abuse Involving Seniors

Washington, DC

The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) recently announced formation of a committee  to protect senior investors from financial exploitation.  According to NASAA, 34% of enforcement actions  taken by state securities regulators since 2008 have involved senior citizens.

NASAA cited four recent cases as examples:

  • In August 2014, the British Columbia Securities  Commission found that an unregistered advisor advised 500 or so, mostly senior investors, to sell their stocks, bonds and mutual funds and purchase high risk investments, He used  weekly radio infomercials, and investment seminars to draw his victims in. He also advised that the investors borrow against their homes to invest. He earned nearly $6 million in fees and commissions while the elderly investors lost over $40 million.
  • In Maryland, a broker was ordered to return over $1 million that he had convinced an 83 year old widow with Alzheimer’s to withdraw from her bank accounts and invest into high risk annuities.
  • In July 2014, a Minnesota advisor was caught operating a $2 million ponzi scheme involving senior investors. Instead of investing the money entrusted to him he spent it on yacht memberships, exotic dancers, dinners and travel.
  • In Montana in June 2014, a advisor bilked over $5 million from 140 mostly senior victims causing at least one victim to suffer a heart attack after learning of the loss. Most lost their life savings and were forced to return to the workforce in their 70’s.

Rex Securities Law provides nationwide representation to investors seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.  Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Rex Securities Law

561 391 1900