A Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration panel ruled Monday night that Raymond James must pay more than $3 million to a group of investors from northwest Louisiana as a result from a case again Eddie Lyons, the Shreveport financial advisor.
The arbitration panel also ruled that Raymond James must pay the costs of investors ($165,000) pay arbitration fees ($111,000).
Investors alleged that Eddie Lyons, as their financial advisor, lost millions of dollars from unauthorized and reckless stock trading. The securities acquired by Lyons were “significantly” in companies and trusts of “oil, speculative gas”, in accordance with the activity of the FINRA.
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Investors submitted a claim statement to FINRA. They claimed that Raymond James and his Shreveport branch manager, Thomas O’Brien, did not supervise Lyons.
Lyons was finally fired by Raymond James in April 2017 after complaints of unauthorized trade.
The panel ruled by O’Brien was not to blame and ordered that his record be expelled from all references to arbitration. The FINRA panel said Raymond James did not provide O’Brien with the tools to manage financial advisors properly. And as a branch manager, O’Brien had no direct and direct contact with investors regarding their investments, risk discussions and other matters related to their accounts.
The FINRA panel said that while O’Brien was not the financial advisor assigned to investor accounts, he took steps to inform his brokers to be careful to avoid an excessive concentration in the oil and gas sector. In addition, letters were sent to investors regarding their investment objectives and risk tolerance and investors did not respond to correspondence.
The amounts owed to investors from Raymond James ranged from $4,251 to $336,468.80 plus interest.
“It’s a great victory,” said Kim Breese, the lawyer’s lawyer. “I am very happy with the prize. I think it is a good prize.
“The arbitration has scope. Jurors have full authority to do whatever they want and nobody is looking at their shoulder as an appellate court for a trial judge. You can not appeal. In this case, I know why they did what they did, but how they got the individual numbers for each individual, we couldn’t do it. ”
Representative in Shreveport’s office Raymond James declined to comment. There were over 70 arbitration meetings. “We had seven full weeks of mediation,” Breese said. “That was the time it took. And that is why the mediation rates were so high.”
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