9. $2.4 million: Edward Dobroski vs. William Gennity, Carmine Berardi, Scott Martinson, and First Standard Financial Co.
Unsuitability, unauthorized trading, failure to supervise and breach of fiduciary duty. Respondents engaged in a scheme to generate commissions at the expense of protecting Claimant’s investment capital.
8. $3 million: Multiple claimants vs. David Blisk, Suzanne McKeown, Spire Securities LLC
Winner: Customers. The respondents filed a motion to vacate the award.
7. $3.1 million: James Fitzpatrick, Sandra Fitzpatrick, The Fitzpatrick Family Trust vs. AXA Advisors and Cambridge Investment Research
Negligence, violation of FINRA Rule 2111; violation of FINRA Rule 2110; negligent misrepresentation and omission of material facts; and breach of fiduciary duty relating to life insurance policies and variable annuities.
6. $3.3 million: Isabel Litovich-Quintana, Jose Torres vs. Morgan Stanley
Winner: Morgan Stanley (Award vacated)
Involved Puerto Rico residents who brought various claims against Morgan Stanley Smith Barney relating to alleged losses in Puerto Rico bonds and bond funds.
5. $4.4 million: Cynthia Blasini, Jose Blanco Garrido, Maria Blanco Alvarado, Jostoche Associates, S.E., Jose E. Blanco Blasini Trust vs. UBS Financial Services Incorporated of Puerto Rico
Violations of Puerto Rico Uniform Securities Act and FINRA Code of Conduct; common law fraud and constructive fraud; negligent misrepresentation; breach of fiduciary duty under Puerto Rico law related to claimants' investments in Puerto Rico bonds and closed-end bond funds, as well as the use of securities-backed loans.
4. $4.8 million: Adriana Fuertes, Camelia Fuertes, Esther Mudafort And Roberto Fuertes vs. UBS Financial Services Inc. of Puerto Rico
Unsuitability; violations of federal securities acts; fault, fraud, deceit, recklessness and negligence; breach of fiduciary duty; breach of contract related to the purchase of Puerto Rico bonds and shares of Puerto Rico closed end funds, and use of unsolicited lines of credit to purchase more of these securities in Claimants’ accounts.
3. $5 million: Multiple claimants vs. WFG Investments Inc.
Violations of federal securities laws; violation of Washington Securities Act; breach of contract; fraud; negligence and gross negligence; and breach of fiduciary duty related to a private placement offering of shares of Servergy, Inc. common stock.
2. $5.2 million: Cathy Carter vs. Royal Alliance and Gary Basralian
Funds stolen from her by former rep Basralian from her Royal Alliance brokerage account.
In two separate cases, Basralian and Royal Alliance were each ordered to pay $2.1 million plus $500,000 in attorney fees. Royal Alliance filed a motion to vacate the attorney fees.
1. $7.8 million Carmen Macias, Pedro Diez, Pedro Diez Macias, Vissepo & Diez Construction Corp., Diez Macias 1 Trust, Pefedima Trust vs. UBS Financial Services Incorporated of Puerto Rico
Breach of fiduciary duty; breach of a broker’s duty of reasonable care; breach of a broker’s duty to supervise and ensure compliance with firm and industry rules; negligent and intentional misrepresentation; fraud and deceit; Causes of action relate to claimants’ investments in Puerto Rico bonds and closed-end bond funds, as well as the use of margin loans to purchase securities.
Financial Industry Regulatory Authority arbitration cases brought by clients against their brokers and/or brokerage firms in 2019 ranged from excessive trading to theft to losses in Puerto Rican bonds.
Click through the gallery above to see which parties prevailed in each case. And then check out the biggest “industry” arb awards — broker versus firm and firm versus firm — for the year to date.