Publicly available records provided by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) on June 9, 2017 indicate that New Jersey-based brokerage and advisory firm Summit Equities was recently sanctioned by FINRA in connection to alleged rule violations. Fitapelli Kurta is interested in speaking to investors who have complaints regarding Summit Equities (CRD# 11039).
Established in New Jersey in 1982, Summit Equities is headquartered in Parsippany, New Jersey and registered with 48 US states and territories. Steven Weinman is Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Chief Investment Officer; Michael Bremer is Chief Operations Officer; Stanley Gregor is President; Robert Lamberti is Co-Chief Investment Officer; Miriam Lefkowitz is Chief Legal Officer; Robert Slomin is Chief Compliance Officer; Mara Stempler is Chief Financial Officer. The firm is registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission and FINRA.
According to the firm’s BrokerCheck report, Summit Equities was recently sanctioned by FINRA in connection to alleged rule violations.
In May 2017 FINRA sanctioned the firm following allegations it “failed to reasonably supervise its registered representatives’ recommendations of multi-class variable annuities (VAs) to customers and failed to establish, maintain and enforce a reasonable supervisory system and written supervisory procedures (WSPs) related to the sale of multi-share class VAs.” A letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (No. 2015043159201) signed by the firm states further: “During the Relevant Period, Summit Equities sold 1,037 individual VA contracts to its customers. Approximately 45% of these VA contracts were L-share contracts. Despite the significant role that VA sales played in Summit Equities’ overall business, the Firm failed to implement a supervisory system and procedures designed to reasonably ensure the suitability of its multi-share class VA sales, including its sales of L-share contracts… until April 2015, the Firm did not provide training or guidance to registered representatives on the features of various share classes and the associated fees and surrender charges, and did not provide them with adequate information to compare share classes to make suitability determinations. In addition, Summit Equites failed to establish, maintain, and enforce WSPs or provide sufficient guidance or training to registered representatives and principals regarding the sale of long-term income riders with multi-share class VAs.”
The firm also allegedly failed to supervise its associated persons’ private securities. According to the AWC letter: “In 2001, Summit Equities allowed registered representative DG to form a separate broker-dealer, GEH, to sell the securities of DC, a hedge fund that DG controlled. The Firm placed two restrictions on DG’s association with GEH. First, the Firm instructed DG that he would be permitted to sell only DC securities through GEH. Second, the Firm required ‘that all sales or placement of any security product must be booked and received through Summit Equities, Inc.’ Contrary to these instructions, DG used GEH to sell the securities of several different hedge funds other than DC and never reported these sales to the Firm as required by the Firm and its procedures governing private securities transactions” In response to all of the above conduct, FINRA censured the firm and issued a fine of $325,000.
If you or someone you know has lost money investing with Summit Equities, call Fitapelli Kurta at 877-238-4175 for a free consultation. You may be eligible to recoup your losses. Fitapelli Kurta accepts all cases on a contingency basis: we only get paid if and when you collect money. Time to file your claim may be limited, so we encourage you to avoid delay. Call 877-238-4175 now to speak to an attorney for free.