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Regulation and Compliance > Federal Regulation > FINRA

FINRA Bars Ex-Edward Jones Rep Who Bought Gold on Behalf of Client

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What You Need to Know

  • FINRA barred an ex-Edward Jones rep who allegedly received money from a client, bought gold coins with it, and returned neither the funds nor the gold to the client.
  • The ex-broker then didn't cooperate with FINRA's investigation, which is a surefire way to be barred.
  • FINRA also barred another ex-Edward Jones broker who was terminated over alleged excessive, unreasonable business expenses.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority barred a terminated Edward Jones broker who received funds that were transferred from a client and allegedly refused to return the money, then admitted to receiving gold coins he claimed were bought for the client with those funds but that the client knew nothing about.

Without admitting or denying FINRA’s findings, John Winslow signed a FINRA letter of acceptance, waiver and consent on March 31 in which he consented to be barred. FINRA signed the letter Tuesday.

Winslow entered the financial services industry in 1998, when he registered with Morgan Stanley as a general securities representative and broker. He joined Edward Jones as a broker and rep on Sept. 20, 2013, according to the regulator.

On, Dec. 15, 2021, Edward Jones filed a Form U5 termination notice saying was discharged from the firm because he failed to disclose he received funds from a client, according to the FINRA AWC letter. On Jan. 26, 2022, Edward Jones filed an amended Form U5 disclosing Winslow’s client alleged he had not returned any of the funds that were transferred to him and refused to do so.

More details were provided in a disclosure on Winslow’s report at FINRA’s BrokerCheck website.

According to the disclosure, the registered rep “admitted he failed to disclose to the Firm that he received funds from a client” and also “admitted to receipt of gold coins purportedly purchased on behalf of the client in a PO Box controlled by the RR and not disclosed to the Firm.”

The disclosure went on to say the client alleged Winslow had “not returned any of the funds that were transferred to RR and refuses to do so” and the client “alleged no memory or awareness of gold coins purportedly purchased on client’s behalf nor have any gold coins been received.”

Winslow then “refused to produce information and documents requested” by FINRA as part of its investigation into his dismissal from Edward Jones, according to FINRA.

Refusing to turn documents over to FINRA is a surefire way for any broker to be barred.

As a result of his actions, Winslow violated FINRA Rules 8210 and 2010, it said.

“Upon identifying John Winslow’s misconduct, Edward Jones promptly terminated his employment and notified the proper authorities,” an Edward Jones spokesperson told ThinkAdvisor on Thursday. “We fully support and have cooperated with the related investigations and made the affected client whole for any losses caused by Winslow.”

Lawrence R. Cock, an attorney at CFL Law in Seattle, who represented Winslow, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Another Ex-Edward Jones Rep Barred

FINRA also barred another ex-Edward Jones broker, in that case over alleged “expenses that were neither reasonable or necessary in amount and type to operate a branch office,” according to a disclosure on his BrokerCheck report.

Without admitting or denying FINRA’s findings, Wesley Cummings signed a FINRA AWC letter on March 31 in which he consented to be barred. FINRA signed the letter Tuesday.

Edward Jones and Joel Beck, an attorney who founded The Beck Law Firm in Lawrenceville, Georgia, and represented Cummings, didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment on Thursday.

Cummings first registered with FINRA in August 2019 as a GSR through an association with Edward Jones, where he also served as a broker.

On Aug. 13, 2021, Edward Jones filed a Form U5 termination notice, disclosing that Cummings was discharged due to “business expenses that were neither reasonable or necessary in amount and type to operate a branch office.”

Like Winslow, Cummings “refused to produce information and documents requested” by FINRA as part of its investigation into his dismissal from Edward Jones, violating FINRA Rules 8210 and 2010, FINRA said.

(Image: Adobe Stock)