The law firm of Oakes & Fosher is presently investigating the alleged misconduct of securities broker John Atchison. According to his publicly available FINRA BrokerCheck report, John Atchison has been the subject of a FINRA sanction.

John Atchison is a Virginia based securities broker. He has worked in the securities industry for thirty-five years. During his career, he has been registered with three different securities firms.

His Registrations

  • E.F. Hutton & Company (1984-1988)
  • Prudential Securities (1987-1994)
  • Davenport & Company (1994-Present)

The Allegations

John Atchison was officially sanctioned by FINRA in July 2019. The findings in this matter state that he engaged in discretionary trading in customer accounts at his member firm without receiving written authorization from the customers to do so, or having his member firm approve the accounts as suitable for discretionary trading. Due to these alleged actions, John Atchison was fined $2,500 and suspended from acting as a securities broker in any fashion for a period of fifteen business days.

What is Discretion?

Discretion is a trading practice that allows securities brokers to execute trades in a customer’s account without having to obtain that customer’s authorization before executing every trade. However, before a broker can begin engaging in discretionary trading, they must first receive written permission from the customer whose account they wish to trade. Verbal or implied permission is not adequate as it can often lead to investors agreeing to the proposition without fully understanding what discretion actually is.

The truth is that discretion can be a very slippery slope due to the amount of power that it gives to the broker. Brokers who abuse discretionary trading have the power to invest their customers in securities that they are highly unsuited for, or trade their accounts excessively–both of which can be detrimental to the investor.

Oakes & Fosher Can Help

Many investors are not aware of the legal recourse available to them after losing money due to securities broker fraud and/or negligence. The truth is that investors who believe they have lost money in this fashion may actually be entitled to damages.

Oakes & Fosher dedicates its entire legal practice to helping investors across the nation. If you, or someone you know, have lost money investing with John Atchison, please contact Oakes & Fosher for a free and private consultation.