The Latest Fuckery from FINRA

What kind of fuckery is this?
You made me miss the Slick Rick gig (oh Slick Rick)
You thought I didn’t love you when I did (when I did)
Can’t believe you played me out like that (Ahhh)

-Amy Winehouse,  Me & Mr Jones


I have throughout my career in finance, studiously avoided having much to do with FINRA, WallStreet’s woefully corrupt self-regulatory entity.

I never got into trouble when I was on the Sell Side (i.e., series 7 licensed individual), so I never experienced their crony-flavored version of justice. But I was very much aware of their role in screwing investors — out of their legal rights to a trial (via mandatory arbitration) and thus out of their monies. If you want a primer on this, check out William Cohan’s series on FINRA arbitrations. It is astounding.

The latest nonsense from this wholly self serving cesspool of corruption is detailed by Susan Antilla, in Dealbook’s A Rise in Requests From Brokers to Wipe the Slate Clean. It turns out that bad brokers can have their records of misdeeds, if not expunged, well then cleaned up quite a bit. Try doing that with a felony or even misdemeanor if you are not a juvenile.

I cannot begin to express my disdain for this organization, which serves the interests of wirehouses and not investors. Indeed, I believe they have done immeasurable damage to individual investors over the decades — through their kangeroo (non)courts, and by the way the “Self” regulate, an inherent contradiction in terms if ever there was one.

Don’t take my word for it. Read Cohan’s series, and do some digging into their formation and background. Just don’t have a large meal first . . .




A Rise in Requests From Brokers to Wipe the Slate Clean
NYT, June 10, 2013

See also:
Wall Street Justice System Is a Kangaroo Court
William D. Cohan
Bloomberg, January 12, 2012

Wall Street’s Captive Arbitrators Strike Again
William D. Cohan
Bloomberg, July 8, 2012

Time to shut down Finra’s arbitration panels
William D. Cohan
Investment News, July 30, 2012

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