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The Wolper Law Firm Has Filed An Arbitration Against Raymond James, Based On Alleged Sales Practice Misconduct By Financial Advisor, Steven Reznick

In March 2019, the Wolper Law Firm, P.A. filed an arbitration claim against Raymond James before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).  The arbitration relates to alleged sales practice misconduct committed by former Raymond James Financial Advisor, Steven Reznick, who was located in Raymond James’ Tallahassee, FL branch office.  The Statement of Claim seeks damages of more than $350,000 and relates to the over-concentration of the clients’ portfolio in biotechnology stocks, including Intrexon Corp., Achaogen, Inc., Acadia Pharmaceuticals, Ziopharm Oncology, Inc., Mylan, Perrigo Company, Receptos, Inc., Alexion Pharmaceuticals, and Celgene Corp.  . 

The Statement of Claim alleges:

This case is about a rogue Financial Advisor, Steven Reznick, who has fifteen reported customer complaints since 2017, alleging sales practice violations.  Claimants, who are both in their 60s, unsophisticated in financial matters and generally inexperienced investors, entrusted their life savings to Mr. Reznick.  In complete disregard for Claimants’ needs and objectives, Mr. Reznick engaged in a high velocity pattern of discretionary trading in speculative biotechnology and pharmaceutical stocks.  Virtually 100% of the assets in Claimants’ accounts were invested in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical sector.  To further compound the risk associated with the concentrated positions, Mr. Reznik purchased and sold both long and short put and call options.  Claimants neither understood nor would have ever accepted the level of risk associated with Mr. Reznick’s discretionary trading strategy.

The investment strategy was a complete failure.  Claimants systematically lost money each year from 2015-2018 while the overall financial markets performed exceptionally well.  When Claimants expressed concern about the depreciation of their accounts, Mr. Reznick told them to be patient and continue holding their biotechnology and pharmaceutical positions.  Mr. Reznick represented that he was close with top level executives at many of the companies and believed strongly that the biotechnology sector was “the future.” 

In the aftermath of this failed strategy, Claimants realized losses of more than $350,000.  In the fall of 2018, Mr. Reznick left Raymond James and is no longer registered to conduct securities business with a FINRA member brokerage firm.

Financial advisors have a legal and regulatory obligation to recommend only suitable investments that are appropriate for their clients’ needs and objectives. Their employing brokerage firm has a legal and regulatory obligation to supervise the Financial Advisors’ sales practices and dealings with clients.  To the extent any of these duties are breached, the customer may be entitled to a recovery of his or her investment losses.  

The Wolper Law Firm represents investors nationwide in securities litigation and arbitration on a contingency fee basis.  Matt Wolper, the Managing Principal of the Wolper Law Firm, is a trial lawyer who has handled hundreds of securities cases during his career involving a wide range of products, strategies and securities.  Prior to representing investors, he was a partner with a national law firm, where he represented some of the largest banks and brokerage firms in the world in securities matters.  We can be reached at 800.931.8452 or by email at mwolper@wolperlawfirm.com.

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