James Carolan Speno, of New York, New York, a stockbroker formerly registered with Morgan Stanley, has been fined $5,000.00 and suspended from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member firm in any capacity based upon consenting to findings that Spendo effected transactions in customer accounts without authorization. Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent, No. 2015045057901 (Jan. 3, 2017).

According to the AWC, from January 1, 2014 to February 13, 2015, while Speno was associated with Morgan Stanley, he effected one thousand investment transactions in eleven customer accounts on a discretionary basis. Critically, the customers never provided Speno with any written approval before Speno effected the transactions. Additionally, the firm did not authorize Speno to exercise discretionary authority in customers’ accounts. FINRA found that Speno’s conduct was violative of FINRA Rule 2010 and NASD Conduct Rule 2510(b).

On March 9, 2015, Spendo was terminated by Morgan Stanley based upon allegations of Speno’s trading activities, including his use of discretion in customer accounts.

The $5,000 fine for 1,000 transactions works out to $5 per trade or less than 5% of Morgan Stanley’s minumum commission transaction.

Guiliano Law Group

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