National investor fraud law firm, KlaymanToskes (“KT”), has commenced an investigation (“Daniel O’Neill Aegis Capital Investigation”) into former Aegis Capital broker Daniel J. O’Neill (“Daniel O’Neill”) in light of complaint recently filed by FINRA. In July 2021, FINRA filed a Complaint against Daniel O’Neill relating to excessively and unsuitably trading the account of one of his customers at Aegis Capital.
Daniel O’Neill Aegis Capital and the July 2021 FINRA Complaint
On July 29, 2021, FINRA filed a complaint against Ex-Aegis Capital broker Daniel O’Neill. The Complaint alleged that Daniel O’Neill excessively and unsuitably traded the account of one of his customers, from July 2014 through June 2015. During that time, Daniel O’Neill executed 456 trades with a total principal value of approximately $22.9 million. Many of the trades were unauthorized.
Daniel O’Neill’s trading generated gross sales credits and commissions of $110,446, of which O’Neill received at least $66,000. By engaging in excessive and unsuitable trading in Customer A’s account, FINRA alleges that Daniel O’Neill violated FINRA Rules 2111 and 2010.
What is Excessive Trading?
According to FINRA, brokerage firms and its financial advisors that excessively traded or “churn” a brokerage account are in violation securities industry rules and regulations. In a FINRA arbitration claim of excessive trading or “churning” in a brokerage account, Claimants may allege a breach of fiduciary duty and conflict of interest for recommended investment strategies whose sole purpose is to enrich the brokerage firm and/or its financial advisor through excessive commissions, fees or costs.
FINRA arbitrations will generally be successful in an excessive trading or “churning” claim if a customer can prove two case facts. First, the panel must conclude the financial advisor controlled or solicited the activity in the account and second, the activity in the account was excessive based on the Claimant’s risk tolerance and investment objectives.
There are many factors an arbitration panel will consider to determine whether a financial advisor had control over the activity in a financial brokerage account. Several factors that may be considered include:
- Client Level of Sophistication;
- Unsuitable Investment Strategy Based on Objectives;
- Prior Transactions of a Similar Nature and Frequency;
- Client Trust and Reliance Upon a Financial Advisor;
- Time Client Devotes to Independent Research;
- Number of Transactions Solicited vs. Unsolicited;
- Similar Positions with Different Brokerage Firms; and
- Client Understanding of Investment Strategy.
Daniel O’Neill and Employment Separation from Aegis Capital
According to BrokerCheck, Aegis Capital discharged Daniel O’Neill on July 29, 2021. The allegations state that Daniel O’Neill failed to keep Aegis Capital apprised of the status of the pending enforcement investigation which resulted in the initiation of a formal enforcement proceeding against the representative.
Daniel O’Neill’s Employment History
Daniel O’Neill was most recently registered with Aegis Capital (Melville, NY) from April 2013 to July 2021. Before registering with Aegis Capital, Daniel O’Neill’s registrations included, but are not limited to:
- Ladenburg Thalmann & Co., Inc. (Melville, NY; March 2011 to May 2013)
- Maxim Group LLC (Woodbury, NY; August 2007 to April 2011).
Lose Money Investing with ex-Aegis Capital broker Daniel O’Neill?
Former customers of former Aegis Capital broker Daniel O’Neill with investment losses that exceed $100,000, and those who may have information relating to the manner in which the broker handled their accounts, are encouraged to contact Lawrence L. Klayman, Esq., at (561) 542-5131, and download our Special Investor Report.
KT is a leading national securities law firm which practices exclusively in the field of securities arbitration on behalf of retail and institutional investors throughout the world in large and complex securities matters. KT has recovered more than $220 million for investors in FINRA arbitrations. KT has office locations in California, Florida, New York, and Puerto Rico.
Lawrence L. Klayman, Esq. (561) 542-5131