Broker James Kearney Purportedly Makes Unauthorized And Unreasonable Trades

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) reports troubling allegations of misconduct by James Joseph Kearney (CRD#: 265734, Houston, Texas). Namely, Kearney violated FINRA rules on trading and faced the financial watchdog’s suspension and fine as a result. Not only that, but four investors filed disputes about the securities broker, who most recently worked for Raymond James. Let’s take a closer look at these damning disclosures which seem to suggest that Kearney made unauthorized, unsuitable and excessive trades.

FINRA Issues Suspension, Fine To James Kearney For Discretionary Trading

Evidently, FINRA sanctioned James Kearney in November 2019 for violating FINRA rules on discretionary trading. Notably, FINRA rules permit securities brokers to trade in client accounts using discretion. However, the securities broker must have written permission from clients and also the securities firm first. Apparently, in Kearney’s case, he traded in client accounts without their written authorization. Not only that, but Raymond James did not condone or authorize Kearney’s exercise of discretion. This meant that the only way that Kearney was able to trade in client accounts was to get the authorizations from clients on days he placed trades – and particularly before executing those trades.

Supposedly, James Kearney made 200 trades inside of 20 client accounts over the period of 2017-2018. Notably, the securities broker discussed investment strategies with clients, but on dates that he traded, he did not speak with clients to get permission. Moreover, FINRA punished Kearney for mismarking trades as unsolicited.

FINRA prohibited Kearney from acting as a broker or even associating with FINRA firms during his suspension. Apparently, Raymond James disaffiliated with Kearney for his unacceptable discretionary stock purchases.

Raymond James Client Disputes Kearney’s Trades

Evidently, a client of Raymond James took aim at James Kearney in 2018. In the complaint, the client first alleged that Kearney made unsuitable trades. It seems that Kearney did not have a reasonable basis to believe that his trades fit the client’s goals, risk tolerance, needs, objectives or other investment criteria. Additionally, the client suggested that Kearney traded excessively and sans the client’s authorization. For losses sustained in this respect, the client demanded compensatory relief. As a result, Raymond James settled the claim through making a $50,000 payment to the client in 2019.

Client Suggests James Kearney Misrepresented Investments, Engaged In Deceptive Trade Practices

Evidently, clients of James Kearney who held accounts at other securities firms have indicated that the securities broker is a problem. Specifically, one client suggested that Kearney misrepresented information in connection with the client’s investments. A different client suggested that purchases were not suitable. Alarmingly, another client indicated that Kearney breached a fiduciary duty, failing to place the client’s interests first. Not only that, but Kearney purportedly acted negligently and deceptively. That dispute resulted in a $55,000 payment to the client for settlement purposes.

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