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Monday, 22 May 2023 13:47

FINRA means business

Seems the referee threw a flag.

Between January 2018 and December 2021, SW Financial, based in Melville, New York, and the co owner of the firm, Thomas Diamante, made material misrepresentations, neglecting to include material information linked with the sale of private placements offerings of pre-IPO securities, according to It was a duo violation; of FINRA rules and Reg Bi’s Disclosure Obligation as well.

According to Reg Bi’s Disclosure Obligation, it’s incumbent upon broker dealers – as well as those associated – to provide investor clients, “with full and fair written disclosure, prior to or at the time of a recommendation, of all material facts relating to conflicts of interest associated with the recommendation,” as spelled out by FINRA.   

Although it’s FINRA’s maiden expulsion, it’s not its first enforcement action evolving around Reg Bi, which has been around since 2020, according to the National Review.

By year’s end, FINRA pronounced, compliance examinations of 1,000 broker-dealers would be conducted.

Monday, 22 May 2023 13:35

Hey, Skip: you talk too much

Loose lips can, um, wreak havoc on ships.

In your branch, most advisors shouldn’t know squat about your plans; after all, they’re not buddies of yours, but competitors, according to

If you’re cutting the cord and bidding a non protocol firm adieu, it’s important for you to buckle down and closely abide by the prospective firm’s instructions.

In the world of missteps, a gaggle them can add significant difficulty to your transition:

Failing to Play by the Rules

Being Clueless About the Transfer Process

Taking Your Eye Off the Ball

Not Staying in Front of Clients Prior to Your Move

Meantime, you know the money? Well, follow it.

Probably not a badly conceived plan considering the consolidation on the part of Phoenix based Advisor’s Group of its network of eight brokerages into one translates into challenges, according to Those obstacles stem from the flow of thousands of financial advisors and assets work billions of dollars.

With more than 10,500 financial advisors and $490 billion in client assets, the firm will shift them to a rebranded company with a spanking new moniker, according to a report earlier this month by Moody's Investors Service.


Friday, 19 May 2023 10:46

Direct indexing and to the point

Your table’s ready, direct indexing. The food’s hot, the beverages refreshing cold.

What else would you expect, considering that in the financial industry, direct indexing’s all that and more – as in the next big thing, according to

Who’s it idyllic for? Those who are calling it a day in the workforce. Under those circumstances, they can unload holdings that impact taxes the least.

If you want to separate yourself from your peers, direct indexing strategies could be your answer, according to

They can dispense tax effective ways to manage any cash windfalls that might be on the horizon among high net worth investors. Not only that, they can shore concentrated stock positions.

In a recent interview at IMPACT, Daniel Needham, president of Morningstar Wealth Management Solutions, said his firm considered direct indexing an “important investment option for advisors to be able to deliver great advice to their clients.

“That’s the primary reason we decided to enter the market,” said Needham. “We think that direct indexing is a good way for clients to be able to have their financial capital personalized, including their values, beliefs and preferences, as well as to be tax-managed for a lot of households. Tax management should happen for every household.”

Friday, 19 May 2023 10:44

In debt to whom?

Someone say doomsday scenario?

Or at least strongly imply it?

Democrat; Republican -- you can just shunt the ideologies aside. Both have a separate point of view with no end in sight in order to circumvent default as the government edges toward its so-called debt ceiling x-date, according to That, of course, is when the Treasury could find its pockets empty, meaning paying all government obligations would require extraordinary measures.

Okay, so while the odds still are relatively low that the government will default on its debt, Wall Street’s no fan of the impact the equity markets would feel in light of debates flashing no indications that the credits are anywhere near rolling.

Meantime, investors should devote rapt attention over the next few weeks and, as one expert suggests, stand poised to become “a bit more defensive,” according to

At this point, at least, setting aside the fact the short term Treasurys have priced in reluctance, significant volatility isn’t necessarily in the cards as far as the markets are concerned.

“Congress was willing to play the game of chicken, but there were fewer members of Congress actually willing to crash the car,” said Betsey Stevenson, professor of public policy and economics at the University of Michigan.

Ethan Roberts covers the weakness in office REITs over the past couple years in a Benzinga article and whether there is any opportunity to buy the dip. To recap, the sector’s struggles began due to the pandemic with remote work gaining in popularity, leading many companies to downsize or abandon their offices.

Not surprisingly, office REITs were crushed and their struggles were exacerbated by high interest rates. Many of these REITs dropped more than 50% and are trading below their March 2020 levels, despite the broader market being substantially higher. 

However, some contrarians are turning more optimistic on the sector. They believe that valuations have become very compelling especially given that public market valuations are much cheaper than private markets. Additionally, there are increasing signs that corporations are pushing back against remote work culture by insisting that workers must go to the office at least a couple of times per week. 

In addition to this, real-time metrics like metro ridership and miles driven also seem to confirm that more workers are returning to the office. Finally, with increasing cracks in the labor market and expectations that the unemployment rate will increase over the next year, workers have less leverage and may be forced to return to the office. 

Finsum: Office REITs have been crushed over the past couple of years due to the pandemic and high rates. Now, there are some reasons for optimism.

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