Kevin C. Yang (also known as Chiagan K. Yang) of Pasadena California has been fined $5,000.00 and suspended from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity based upon consenting to findings that he executed unauthorized trades in a customer’s investment account. Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent No. 2017052993601 (Mar. 7, 2018).

According to the AWC, from April of 2013 to January of 2017, during the time that Yang was a stockbroker of Morgan Stanley, he made trades on a discretionary basis in the accounts of nine customers. Evidently, Yang had not procured customers’ written permission for him to exercise discretion in their investment accounts. Moreover, the firm had not authorized any of the customers’ accounts for purposes of the discretionary trades Yang placed. Consequently, FINRA found Yang’s conduct violative of FINRA Rule 2010 and National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) Rule 2510(b).

FINRA Public Disclosure reveals that Yang is referenced in five customer initiated investment related disputes containing accusations of his misconduct while employed with Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley. In particular, on April 13, 2009, a customer initiated investment related complaint regarding Yang’s activities was resolved for $16,300,000.00 in damages supported by allegations that auction rate securities transactions were effected in the customer’s account that were not suitable for the customer, and misrepresentations had been made to the customer concerning the liquidity and risks of the corporate debt investments purchased by the customer.

Subsequently, a customer initiated investment related complaint involving Yang’s conduct was settled for $65,000.00 in damages based upon accusations that misrepresentations were made concerning structured products sold to the customer. Subsequently, a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim concerning Yang’s activities was resolved for $405,000.00 in damages founded on allegations that Yang inappropriately recommended that the customer purchase structured products. FINRA Arbitration No. 16-00234 (Nov. 3, 2016). Thereafter, a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim regarding Yang’s conduct was settled for $57,500.00 in damages supported by accusations of unsuitability and misrepresentation in regard to the structured products purchased for the customer’s account between August of 2014 and April of 2016. FINRA Arbitration No. 16-01120 (Dec. 18, 2016).

Another customer filed an investment related arbitration claim involving Yang’s activities in which the customer requested unspecified compensatory damages based upon allegations that unauthorized structured products trades were executed in the customer’s account. FINRA Arbitration No. 18-00119 (Jan. 11, 2019). Further, on January 16, 2019, a customer initiated investment related complaint concerning Yang’s activities was resolved for $40,000.00 in damages founded on accusations that structured products sold to the customer had been misrepresented.

Yang was discharged from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney on April 12, 2017 supported by allegations that Yang failed to obtain customer consent before he effected trades in their non-discretionary investment accounts; conduct violative of the firm’s policies.

The information contained herein has been obtained from reliable sources however may not be accurate and is not guaranteed by us. Readers are encouraged to undertake their own independent investigation and evaluation of the relevant facts. All claims and allegations are subject to adjudication, decisions may be subject to appeal, and no inference is intended, nor should any inference be made from any information contained herein from any source.

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