Many investors are unaware of the legal recourse available to them after losing money due to securities broker fraud and/or negligence. The truth of the matter is that investors who have lost money in this fashion may actually be entitled to damages. The law firm of Oakes & Fosher is interested in hearing from investors who feel this might be them.

Oakes & Fosher is presently investigating the alleged misconduct of former securities broker Mark Kaplan. According to his publicly available FINRA BrokerCheck report, Mark Kaplan has been the subject of multiple customer disputes.

Mark Kaplan was a New York based securities broker. He worked in the securities industry for twenty-eight years. During his career, he was registered with five different securities firms.

His Registrations

  • Lehman Brothers (1989-1995)
  • CIBC Oppenheimer Corp. (1995-1998)
  • Morgan Stanley (1998-2005, 2009-2011)
  • Citigroup Global Markets (2005-2009)
  • Vanderbilt Securities (2011-2018)

The Allegations

  • In January 2007, customers alleged that the investments purchased in their account on Mark Kaplan’s recommendation were unsuitable, misrepresented, and traded excessively. This case was settled for $24,750 in damages.
  • In April 2007, a customer alleged that Mark Kaplan failed to follow instructions and executed an unauthorized trade.
  • In March 2011, a customer alleged that Mark Kaplan traded their account excessively. This case was settled for $45,000 in damages.
  • In November 2015, a customer alleged that Mark Kaplan made unsuitable investment recommendations. This case was settled for $25,000 in damages.
  • In February 2016, another customer alleged that Mark Kaplan made unsuitable investment recommendations. This case was settled for $500,000 in damages.
  • In March 2016, customers alleged that Mark Kaplan engaged in unsuitable and excessive trading. The alleged transgressions would have taken place between February 2004 and March 2011. This case was settled for $240,000 in damages.
  • In March 2018, Mark Kaplan was officially sanctioned by FINRA. The findings in this matter state that he churned the account of a senior customer. According to the findings, Kaplan exercised de facto control over the account, knowing fully that this elderly customer relied heavily on him to make financial decisions that would benefit him. The customer eventually developed dementia which further diminished his capacity to understand his financial state. Mark Kaplan’s excessive trading of the account resulted in $723,000 in losses to the elderly customer while generating $735,000 in commissions for himself. Due to these alleged actions, Mark Kaplan was barred by FINRA from acting as a securities broker in any fashion. The firm settled with the customer’s guardian for $470,000 in damages.

Churning

Securities brokers have an obligation to their customers to trade their accounts suitability–both in the securities they recommend, and the frequency in which they execute trades. Securities brokers, like Mark Kaplan, sometimes will trade their customers’ accounts excessively even if there is no financial benefit to the customer. Despite this, these brokers will still do this because it often leads to them receiving more commissions. When a securities broker trades a customer’s account excessively with the express purpose of increasing their own commissions, it is referred to as churning. This is a deceptive trading practice that many brokers continue to partake in despite its fraudulent nature.

Oakes & Fosher Can Help

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