John Frederick Griner of Atlanta Georgia a stockbroker and investment adviser representative of Morgan Stanley has been fined $5,000.00 and suspended from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity based upon findings that he enganged in unauthorized trading in customer accounts. Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent No. 2019064538201 (Jan. 7, 2021).
According to the AWC, on November 5, 2019, FINRA was notified by Morgan Stanley that Griner’s employment had been terminated while he was internally probed for exercising discretion in customer accounts. Morgan Stanley indicated that it was reviewing Griner’s transactions to determine if customers provided him with pre-trade confirmation before trades were made in their accounts.
Between May of 2017 and September of 2019, trades were executed in four customer accounts by the stockbroker before Griner spoke with those customers. At no point prior to those trades did customers provide written authorization to Griner concerning discretionary trading. The securities broker dealer did not authorize Griner’s discretionary trading either. FINRA determined that Griner’s conduct was violative of FINRA Rules 2010 and 3260(b) as well as National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) Rule 2510(b).
FINRA Public Disclosure reveals that Griner is referenced in a customer initiated investment related complaint in which the customer requested unspecified damages supported by allegations of unauthorized transactions in the AG Edwards Sons customer’s account resulting in damages to the customer.
Griner was associated with Morgan Stanley between March 9, 2011 and October 29, 2019. Since November 7, 2019, he has been registered with Benjamin F. Edwards Company Inc. as both a stockbroker and investment adviser representative.