The SIPA

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Archive for the ‘John Busacca’

The Misunderstood Male

Understanding Finances and Women? As I journey through this incredible life I have been blessed with, I have learned so many amazing things.  After 51 years I can honestly say I learn something new each and every day about myself, others and the world we live in.  As a person in the financial world, it’s […]
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WIRE TAPS, LEAKS, SURVEILLANCE AND MUSLIM BANS

FINRA members are shaking their heads at America. As a long time member of the Financial Industry with over 25 years of battle scars under my belt, it never ceases to amaze me how clueless the majority of the people are in this country to what is actually occurring.  I often talk to my fellow […]
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TRIPLE PLAY

Puzzling moves by the Democrat party  One of the rarest feats in all of sports is the triple play in baseball.   Despite the fact that around 250,000 baseball games have been played over the last 140 years, the ‘triple play’ has occurred only 709 times in that span or roughly every 350 games played.   It’s […]
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A guy walks into a bar and….

The beginning of many great jokes always starts off with the proverbial “Guy walking into a bar and orders a drink.”  This month we thought we would analyze a scenario from three different perspectives and ask from three different perspectives why some are regulated and others fall through the cracks.   An 18 year old […]
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Wells Fargo: Crime Does Pay

    We have been monitoring closely the events of the last few months and it appears that rules and laws are in place but are often ignored or enforcement is very selective. Small brokerage firms in particular have seen their compliance cost and burden soar due to nonstop rule making that continually requires yet […]
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WiKi Leaks and FINRA/SEC

Will the inevitable happen sooner or later?  Wiki Leaks and its founder Julian Assange have spent the better part of three years tormenting the most powerful country and people in the world.  From Hillary Clinton to the NSA, they have been brazen in their attack and release of previously classified emails on a variety of […]
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The Insanity Must End!

Time to Stop Attacking Brokerage Firms Americans have witnessed firsthand the acts of terror here in our homeland and abroad in Europe. We are constantly reminded to stay vigilant and to make sure we report everything we see that we deem suspicious. Despite this constant reminder from government officials, we have seen time and again […]
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FINRA Model May Not Be Sustainable

FINRA has recently released its annual audited financials and as an organization, it’s not a pretty trend and one has to wonder if big changes need to be contemplated now rather than later.  While the Accountants at FINRA have tried desperately to squeeze out some sort of profit for FINRA for many years now, it’s […]
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BREXIT OR SAXSIT?

  For those of you who are loyal readers of the SIPA, you already know that basically all roads lead back to the Wall Street cartel that basically controls the American way of life. From Congress to the White house, nothing gets done, passed or enacted unless a blessing from the real Godfather is granted.   […]
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Anti Money Laundering Follies

Is it time to stop the charade?  The recent horrific attacks in my hometown of Orlando served as a reminder of how vulnerable we really are.  Whether it’s flying on a plane, going to a theme park or taking mass transit, we are all vulnerable to Islamic terrorist attacks.  Sure, there are things we can […]

The City Beautiful

ORLANDO STRONG!  As a longtime resident of Orlando, I have grown to love the place they call “The City Beautiful”. For many years I too labored under the false idea that Orlando was the city of Mickey Mouse and that the only thing to do was go to amusement parks.  In 2000 I took a […]
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World Banks on Fire!

Why regulators keep looking the other way as banks continue to set fires The world banking system continues to be a series of near misses and impending disasters time and time again despite multiple close calls.  In “Man on Fire” we chronicled a young fool who continually played with fire and it almost cost him […]
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Silence of the Lambs

The Fed’s Wall Street Obsession is Killing American Capitalism  For nearly 20 years now, we have all sat idly by, watching the Federal Reserve obsess over the stock market like  Clarice in Silence of the Lambs obsessed over Hannibal.  It is high time the Congress of this United States got together and limited the Fed […]
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The Wizard of Fed Oz

Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain  As we watch yet again the confusing signals of the stock market and the actions of the Fed Reserve, I can’t help but think of the classic movie the Wizard of Oz.   The last 8 years have certainly been the most bizarre and confounding mix of […]
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FINRA firing expensive bullets into Zombies

  Time for a FINRA reevaluation of importance  Each month I can’t wait to study the monthly disciplinary actions on FINRA’s web site for two reasons: First, what sort of idiotic thing did somebody try to pull and Secondly and more importantly, who do I know on the list?  After 20 plus years in the […]
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The Year that was 2015

Happy New Year?  It never ceases to amaze me how we become so sentimental on December 31st each year but by January 2nd we are back to our grind of running around, shopping , working, stressing and losing our patience with each other. All day today and tomorrow we will greet everybody we encounter with […]
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DONALD TRUMP vs. PETER PAN AND THE LOST BOYS

Why the Donald is upsetting Wall Street and Washington  In the famous novel/movie ‘Peter Pan”, Peter leads a group of miscreant orphans that live in “Never Never Land” and they never grow up and they never change.  On a daily basis they have staged fights with the local Native Indians on the island and some […]
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Who is the real criminal here?

Short Sale Rules being ignored On December 17th 2015 the SEC announced formal charges against Martin Shkreli and his Lawyer for committing Securities fraud, embezzling money from his hedge fund and a variety of other charges.   The SEC also said he made misrepresentations to his ‘Executing Broker Dealer” regarding the location of stock he was […]

Know when to hold ‘em, Know when to fold “em

Risk vs Reward when dealing with FINRA   We have seen yet another increase in the ‘Death Penalty” being issued by FINRA to firms across the county for a variety of reasons ranging from failure to supervise to failure to do anything.  How did we get to this point whereby almost all actions appear to […]
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The end of Low Priced Stocks?

Caution: Low Priced Securities! For the last decade or so we have advised firms repeatedly that it’s no longer a matter of WILL Clearing firms and FINRA eliminate low priced physical stock certificates being deposited but a matter of WHEN they will end it. In the last five to seven years it seems that one […]
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HAPPY BIRTHDAY “POPS”

So my Dad would have been 76 today.  I wish I could say its been getting better since he left us a few years ago, But that’s just not the case. Its tough to be a father and you really can’t take the proper time to grieve because you have to take care of your […]
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What is a Broker Dealer Worth?

The answer is that you may NEVER find out….We continue to lose Members on a regular basis who simply can’t make it and either just sell their Broker Dealer for a tiny amount of money as a shell or file for withdrawal and just give up.   We need a real Member who understands the […]
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Did Tim Cook Just Do That?

APPLE CEO IN SOME RISKY TERRITORY   Yesterday was a tense day on Wall Street.  The Asian stock markets had just collapsed and US exchanges were poised for some of the biggest declines in years.  The futures market indicated that a collapse of at least 600 points for the dow jones industrial average.  As I […]
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A Head Scratching FINRA Verdict

  Recently the National Adjudicatory Council (NAC)has been raising eyebrows with a variety of new rules, sanction guidelines and some decisions that are quite confusing to say the least.  Recently we wrote ‘Broker Beware” in which the NAC will now be recommending a lifetime bar for unsuitable trading and other infractions.  Last month the NAC issued a decision […]
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FINRA needs to get out of FRAUD business

Recently we discussed in ‘Broker Beware” the new NAC guidelines that call for a lifetime bar for unsuitability and for cases involving fraud.  While we think this can lead to an influx of trial lawyers attacking small firms with over blown claims of unsuitability in order to get them to settle quickly, we believe that […]

Broker Beware !

New Enforcement Sanctions from NAC  Last week the FINRA’s National Adjudicatory Council (NAC) released a statement that increases dramatically the sanctions on individuals found guilty of fraud and unsuitability.   In the statement NAC said:   The revised Sanction Guidelines now advise FINRA adjudicators to strongly consider barring an individual respondent, or expelling a firm, for cases involving fraud. […]
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ACTUAL PHONE CALLS TO FINRA RELEASED

  FINRA recently launched with much fanfare its toll free senior hot line. WASHINGTON—The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has launched the toll-free FINRA Securities Helpline for SeniorsTM to provide older investors with a supportive place to get assistance from knowledgeable FINRA staff related to concerns they have with their brokerage accounts and investments. Senior […]
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Republican “To Do” List

Victory last night offers promise and potholes, especially to Broker Dealers  As I watched the results from the election pour in last night from across the country, I had this sudden wave of Déjà vu  sweep over me.  For some reason I have experienced this same euphoria and reaction to a political landslide before but […]
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Expungement and Amnesty

    Expungement of records being curtailed The SEC recently approved FINRA rule 2081 which severely limits the expungement of broker records in making settlements with customers.   The new rule will no longer allow an expungement of the customer complaint from the broker’s record as a condition for settlement.  On the surface this would appear […]
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FINRA Launches Retrospective Rule Review

 FINRA recently announced that they will begin conducting a “look back” at their current rules to determine if the rules are meeting their intended objectives. “FINRA believes it is important to look back at its significant rule makings to determine whether those rules and rule sets are meeting their intended investor-protection objectives by reasonably efficient means,” said Robert […]
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A World Governed by FINRA

How would other industries would handle playing in a brokers’ world ? Over the years at conferences and cocktail parties I often hear Brokers and BD owners lament about the restrictions placed on them compared to other industries.  Indeed it is a very regulated world in the securities industry and the amount of rules, regulations, reports, […]
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The Lost Boys

  Is soccer mom or Washington to blame for a lost generation? The stock market roared approval of the fed decision to reduce fiscal stimulus from a whopping 85 Billion per month to a still whopping 75 billion per month.  Wall Street loves low interest rates and borrowing money for free so they can play […]
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SIPA Member Robert Keenan Wins Board Seat!

FINRA announced yesterday that Robert Keenan, owner of St. Bernard Financial and a long time SIPA member has won the small firm seat on the Board of Governors.  Keenan defeated fellow SIPA member and current board member Jed Bandes in a close election. We are proud of the efforts put into this important election and […]
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SMALL FIRM RACE PRESENTS OPPORTUNITY

Make your voice heard!  The race for the small firm seat is underway and all three candidates are busy asking members for your vote.  Sitting governor Jed Bandes is locked in what appears to be a tight race with David Sobel , the head of the Small Firms Advisory Board and newcomer Robert Keenan of […]
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RETIRED AMERICANS FEELING SQUEEZE

  Brokers Beware   With each passing year retired Americans have felt the squeeze of the artificially lowered interest rates that have been crippling this country without so much as a whimper from AARP and its lobbyist friends.  Years ago, many Americans would work their whole life and save up a couple hundred thousand and […]
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FINRA Finally Protecting Brokers

John Thomas case could set precedent  FINRA recently came out with a scathing and lengthy complaint against John Thomas Financial and its principals, including its owner Tommy Belesis.  While most of the charges were ugly to say the least however the part of the complaint that really caught my eye was the fact that JTF […]
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SIDE BAR with Bill Singer

New series brings long overdue exposure to Wall Street problems   Noted securities attorney, blogger, SIPA friend and Forbes contributor Bill Singer has recently launched a new interview series in conjunction with Reuters news that is tackling problems often swept under the rug or never mentioned by todays media..  Over the years Bill has been a […]
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Broker Protection Reform Needed

Its time to protect the reps from theft  On a monthly basis it seems we read another story about how the owner of a B/D shut his doors, filed a BD withdrawal and then decided to keep last month’s entire production and not pay out their brokers.  In a recent case a Firm owner from […]
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A New Way to Steal Client Money

How FINRA and Merrill Lynch now define theft   Every month I peruse the monthly disciplinary actions for two reasons. First to see what the trend of actions currently is and secondly to see if I know any of the firms or people who are being named.  This month was no different but one case in […]
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Fiscal Cliff or Emperors New Coat?

 Wall Street continues to control Washington As the press reports on this fairy tale called a fiscal cliff, I can’t help but be reminded of the famous children’s tale about an Emperor who ordered the greatest coat in the history of mankind to be made for him.  As the emperor proudly marched down the streets […]
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A Lesson in Pink

A walk to remember I recently was coaxed (told) by my wife to take part in a 5k walk for Breast Cancer Awareness in downtown Orlando.  October is breast cancer awareness month and if you are a fan of the NFL you notice players wearing pink wristbands, shoes and ribbons all over their body.  For […]
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Clearing Firms Replacing FINRA

  Small firms being squeezed out In 2006  the NASD announced they were going to merge with the NYSE and eliminate the one firm one vote rights of over 5000 brokerage firms in the United States.  While some ushered in the idea of a public dominated board, others cautioned that without one firm one vote, […]
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Merrill Lynch Rules

FINRA Fines Merrill one day of interest for five years of violations Today FINRA announced that they have fined Merrill Lynch $500, 000 for five years worth of violations related to their failure to timely update broker and firm records to reflect customer complaints and arbitrations. In the Merrill Lynch case, FINRA found that: From 2007 […]
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T-BONE!

            T-BONE Lessons from George Costanza   Long ago I learned that literally all lessons in life can somehow be related to either the “Godfather” or in some strange way “Seinfeld”.  Over the past year small firms have been flooded with hate spewing e-mails that seem to obsess about the […]
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FINRA RATE HIKES MAY HELP YOUR FIRM

Silver lining not seen by all Recently some groups and supposed champions of the membership were shocked by the various fees that were increased by FINRA as a result of a large loss.  I’m not sure why you would be shocked by this when the CEO of FINRA, Rick Ketchum announced in April that there […]
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FINRA CANDIDATES DEBATE FOR YOUR VOTE

 Candidates bring solutions to the table The Financial Services Exchange (FSX) once again was the only small firm advocate that was willing to hold an open and candid debate of the candidates for FINRA’s small firm position and just like past years, they asked members of the SIPA to help out.  When Judy Ensweiler of […]
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A Woman’s Work and a Woman’s Worth?

This is a great question and an even more haunting song by Kate Bush.  It’s been a few weeks since my friend and mentor Melodie Winters passed and I have had time to reflect on her life, love and passion.  I have resisted reaching out to her husband Fred because I know he is still […]
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FACEBOOK FOLLIES

  IPO could become one of the greatest scams  Today is the day we all have all been told we are waiting for: The Facebook IPO!  Investors around the world will line up to get shares of the social media giant in the aftermarket and will no doubt see dollar signs in their eyes. The […]
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Should we all be regulated the same way?

A FINRA approach could do wonders for America   I recently had the obligatory Easter phone call with my mother in New York.  In between questions about the kids and my wife and some occasional Obama bashing we got on the subject of the warm weather the entire country experienced this past winter.  Mom lives […]
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REGULATORY IMMUNITY?

What the Supreme Court decision might mean for you The recent ruling by the Supreme Court not to hear the appeal of the Standard Chartered is not a shocking surprise to many due to the sheer mass of appeals the Supreme Court is inundated with each year.  Our guess is that about ten minutes of […]
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