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My Insights on Jeffrey Larson’s Termination by Arete Wealth Management for Investors’ Rights and Financial Recovery

As a financial analyst and writer, I feel compelled to inform you about the recent termination of financial advisor Jeffrey Larson by Arete Wealth Management, which was revealed through his FINRA BrokerCheck record. On October 11, 2023, Larson was dismissed due to his lack of transparency during an internal review. Moreover, on May 18, 2021, an investor accused Larson of suggesting investments that were not suitable for them.

The Importance of Suitable Investment Advice

As the famous saying goes, “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest,” attributed to Benjamin Franklin. This is especially relevant when discussing the suitability of investments. FINRA Rule 2111 mandates that brokers like Larson should ensure their recommendations align with their clients’ financial objectives. Violations of this rule can include excessive trading, proposing inappropriate investment strategies, and steering clients towards high-risk or hard-to-sell assets. As an investor, if you lean on your broker for investment advice, and they lead you astray, you may have the option to reclaim your losses through FINRA arbitration proceedings.

Jeffrey Larson’s Professional Summary

During his 19-year career in finance, Larson has been associated with numerous firms, including Arete Wealth Management, Larson Financial Securities, Financial Network Investment Corporation, CRI Securities, and Securian Financial Services. He has also cleared important industry exams, the Series 66 and the Series 7, showcasing his expertise.

Investors dissatisfied with their financial advisors can take several steps to lodge their complaints. The approach may be different based on where you are and your unique situation. Below is a broad guide for investors:

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1. Determining the Essence of Your Complaint

  • If you suspect misconduct, deceit, or unethical behaviors in your dealings with a financial advisor, this is a matter of serious concern.
  • If the problem is related to subpar advisory services that don’t necessarily involve illegality, that’s another type of issue.

2. Addressing the Financial Advisor or Firm

  • Try to settle any misunderstandings or issues by speaking directly with the advisor or their employer at first.
  • If a resolution isn’t achieved through direct communication, filing a formal written complaint with the firm is advised. Keeping a log of all interactions is essential.

3. Reaching Out to Regulatory and Industry Bodies

  • If you’re in the United States, filing a complaint with FINRA is a significant step.
  • Also, consider contacting any professional associations the advisor may be a part of—these organizations have their own complaint mechanisms.

4. Engaging with Government Consumer Protection

  • In the U.S., the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) addresses complaints about financial products or services.
  • Other countries likely have similar government entities focused on consumer protection in financial dealings.

5. Exploring Arbitration and Mediation

  • If your service agreement mentions arbitration, this legal procedure would be your route rather than pursuing court action.
  • Mediation could be an alternative, utilizing a neutral mediator to help you solve the dispute.

6. Considering Legal Action

  • If the situation is dire and involves a hefty sum or illicit activities, speaking with a lawyer specializing in financial difficulties is warranted.
  • If an advisor’s actions have harmed many clients, participating in a class action lawsuit could be viable.

7. Utilizing Online Platforms and Reviews

  • Sharing your experience on review sites, while not a formal complaint, may provide valuable forewarning for others.

8. Maintaining Detailed Records

  • Document all correspondence, advice, transactions, and meetings with the advisor—crucial for any formal grievance or legal action.

9. Staying Empowered With Knowledge

  • It’s vital to be knowledgeable about your rights as an investor, bearing in mind these differ from country to country.

10. Diligently Following Up

  • Don’t leave your complaint in limbo; check the status routinely post-filing.

Remember, the route often begins with attempting to remedy the problem directly with the advisor or their firm. If unsuccessful, taking the matter up a notch to regulatory authorities, industry associations, or through legal channels is the subsequent course of action. And to bring a financial fact to light: A concerning number of financial advisors may not have your best interests at heart—nearly 7% of advisors have been disciplined for misconduct, as per a study by the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Always verify an advisor’s credentials and history, like their FINRA CRD number. My priority is to clarify the finance and legal spheres for everyone, making these realms less intimidating and more navigable.

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