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Ex-Waddell & Reed, NYLife Reps Sanctioned for Alleged Forgery

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What You Need to Know

  • The ex-NYLife and Waddell & Reed reps allegedly forged documents.
  • FINRA barred the ex-NYLife broker after he didn't provide on-the-record testimony as requested.
  • Not cooperating with a FINRA investigation is a surefire way for a broker to be barred from the industry.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority has barred a former NYLife Securities representative and fined and suspended an ex-Waddell & Reed rep, both of whom allegedly forged documents while with their respective firms.

Without admitting or denying FINRA’s findings, Kyle Zachary Wittgren signed a FINRA letter of acceptance, waiver and consent on Thursday, consenting to the broker-dealer self-regulating group’s decision to bar him from associating with any FINRA member firm in all capacities.

Meanwhile, Mark Lloyd Post signed a FINRA AWC letter on Dec. 7, consenting to FINRA’s decision to fine him $5,000 and suspend him from associating with any FINRA member firm in all capacities for two months. He also did not admit or deny FINRA’s findings

FINRA attorneys signed both AWC letters on Monday.

“Upon learning of the underlying facts, we separated from Mr. Wittgren promptly and cooperated fully with FINRA,” Kevin Maher, a spokesperson for NYLife Securities parent company New York Life, told ThinkAdvisor on Tuesday.

LPL Financial, which closed on its acquisition of Waddell & Reed in April, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Noncooperation With FINRA

Wittgren joined NYLife as a general securities representative on April 26, 2016, according to FINRA.

But the firm filed a Form U5 Termination Notice April 29, 2021, disclosing it let him resign after he “admitted he signed clients’ names” without their “knowledge or consent, submitted 13 unfunded variable annuity rollover applications and altered three of the clients’ email addresses in violation of company policy,” according to a disclosure on his report at FINRA’s BrokerCheck.com.

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Wittgren then “refused to provide on-the-record testimony” as part of FINRA’s investigation into his actions, in violation of FINRA Rules 8210 (requiring members to supply information and testimony when requested by FINRA)  and 2010 (governing standards of commercial honor and principles of trade).

Not cooperating with a FINRA investigation is a surefire way for any broker to be barred from the industry.

William C. Wagner, an attorney at Taft, Stettinius & Hollister who represented Wittgren, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

‘Signature Irregularities’

Post became registered as an investment company and variable contracts products representative through an association with Waddell & Reed in August 2016. In April 2019, he became registered as a general securities representative through his association with the firm.

But on March 6, 2020, Waddell filed a Form U5 reporting that Post had resigned from the firm while “under internal review related to signature irregularities on forms used to facilitate fixed insurance and securities transactions,” according to the AWC letter. Post “admitted to signing client names to documents,” according to a disclosure on his report at BrokerCheck.com.

Post was also investigated by the Oklahoma Department of Securities over allegations that he “signed a client’s name two times to correct errors on paperwork that the client had originally signed,” according to another disclosure.

He is no longer registered as a broker but still registered as an advisor, according to BrokerCheck.

(Photo: Adobe Stock)