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Robert W Pearce
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Mr. Pearce has tried, arbitrated and mediated numerous disputes involving complex securities, commodities, administrative, contract, commercial, business tort and employment law issues for over 30 years. He has represented hundreds of clients in Federal and state courts (trial and appellate) as... More
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The Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A.
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The Investor's Rights Law Blog
    May 9, 2013 2:48 PM

    David Arthur Tetley, a former broker with New York, New York based New England Securities, submitted a letter of acceptance, waiver, and consent in which the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) found that he sold equity-indexed annuities (EIAs) to investors outside the scope of his employment with his member firm and without providing the firm with prompt written notice of the business activity. FIRNA's findings stated that Mr. Tetley's undisclosed EIA sales totaled about $1,586,760, and he received approximately $119,000 in compensation for his efforts. Mr. Tetley, of Fairfield, Connecticut, was fined $5,000 and suspended from association with any FINRA member in any capacity for four months. The fine must be paid either immediately upon Tetley's re-association with a FINRA member firm following his suspension or prior to the filing of any application or request for relief from any statutory disqualification, whichever is earlier. The suspension is in effect from January 7, 2013 through May 6, 2013.

    An annuity is a form of insurance that offers a series of payments for a period of time. An annuity can be either fixed or variable. Fixed annuities are invested in conservative investments, and the return to investors may vary, but a minimum rate of return is established. Variable annuities are higher in risk when compared to fixed annuities and depend on how the stock market is performing. Variable annuity buyers have the option to allocate the cash invested into different asset classes such as mutual funds, indices, fixed income investments or bonds, and money market.

    Equity-indexed annuities are complex products that are hybrid of both fixed and variable annuities. Their returns vary more than a fixed annuity, but not as much as a variable annuity. So, equity-indexed annuities are more risky than fixed annuities, but less risky than a variable annuity. Equity-indexed annuities offer a minimum guaranteed interest rate combined with an interest rate linked to a market index. Because of the guaranteed interest rate, equity-indexed annuities have less market risk than variable annuities. Equity-indexed annuities also have the potential to earn returns better than traditional fixed annuities when the stock market is rising. Equity-indexed annuities come with fees that are higher than any investment, and sales commissions to brokers can go as high as 12%. Surrender charges can go as high as 18%.

    Selling away is the inappropriate practice of an investment professional who sells or solicits securities or investments not held, approved, or authorized by the brokerage firm with which the professional is associated. Under NASD and FINRA rules, brokerage firms must approve investments offered by their investment professionals and supervise its sales.

    Broker-dealers must establish and implement a reasonable supervisory system to protect customers from broker misconduct. If broker-dealers do not establish and implement a reasonable supervisory system, they may be liable to investors for damages flowing from the misconduct. Therefore, investors who have suffered damages due to Mr. Tetley's unauthorized EIA sales can bring forth claims to recover losses against New England Securities, which should have prevented Mr. Tetley from committing the described illegal activity.

    Have you suffered losses in your New England Securities brokerage account? If so, call Robert Pearce at the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A. for a free consultation. Mr. Pearce is actively investigating and accepting clients with valid claims against New England Securities stockbrokers who may have engaged in misconduct and caused investors losses.

    The most important of investors' rights is the right to be informed! This Investors' Rights blog post is by the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., located in Boca Raton, Florida. For over 30 years, Attorney Pearce has tried, arbitrated, and mediated hundreds of disputes involving complex securities, commodities and investment law issues. The lawyers at our law firm are devoted to protecting investors' rights throughout the United States and internationally! Please visit our website,, post a comment, call (800) 732-2889, or email Mr. Pearce at for answers to any of your questions about this blog post and/or any related matter.

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