The August 2nd decision is a culmination of a range of offenses, inquiries and disciplinary actions dating back over a decade to February of 2002. The complaint charges Wedbush with three violations relating to the firm’s failure to file reports on employment registration of registered representatives, customer complaints, and statistical reports in a timely and accurate manner; and in some cases failure to file them at all. A fourth violation accused the firm of inadequate supervision, and a fifth named Edward Wedbush specifically, alleging that he failed to fulfill his duties as president and supervise registration filings from August 2006 until July 2010.
Wedbush was unavailable for comment despite calls to the firm and its attorney.
“The firm’s failure to remedy the reporting problems despite repeated warnings from FINRA and the NYSE is also an aggravating factor applicable to all violations,” the FINRA hearing officer said in the panel decision. “Over a period of at least eight years leading up to the filing of the complaint, NYSE and FINRA both warned the firm in examinations, an AWC, Wells Notices, and disciplinary actions, or failures in its regulatory reporting, yet problems persisted,” the decision stated.
And in harsh words for the firm’s president, the FINRA decision noted that “Mr. Wedbush knew of the firm’s reporting issues.” It went on to say that “as president of the firm, Mr. Wedbush should have taken more steps to ensure that the firm addressed its problems, but he did not.”