Woodbridge Ponzi Scheme results in FINRA barring broker Floyd Powell
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc. has barred Floyd Powell from the securities industry. The broker sold close to $3.5 million of promissory notes relating to the Woodbridge Group of Companies through unapproved private securities transactions between July 2016 and December 2017. According to FINRA, Powell received $104,000 in commissions from the transactions of the Woodbridge Ponzi Scheme.
Powell Acted as Unregistered Sales Agent for Woodbridge
Between July 2016 and December 2017, Powell sold Woodbridge promissory notes to 13 investors, 11 of whom were customers of MetLife Securities or MSI. According to FINRA, he did not provide notice to the broker-dealers prior to selling the securities.
According to FINRA’s BrokerCheck system, Powell worked at MSI Financial Services Inc., formerly known as MetLife Securities Inc. In March 2017, MSI merged with MML Investors Services Inc. where Mr. Powell was registered through last February. According to the FINRA report, MML reported that it had terminated Mr. Powell in February 2018.
Despite concerns, many brokers sold promissory notes related to the Woodbridge Group of Companies, a purported real estate investment fund that is alleged to be a $1.2 billion Ponzi scheme, resulting it massive losses for investors.
During the investigation it was revealed that some of the Woodbridge sales agents were registered at broker-dealers or investment advisory firms. Furthermore, several of the sales agents had been censured or barred by the SEC, FINRA or state securities regulators.
In December 2017, Woodbridge declared bankruptcy, and weeks later the Securities and Exchange Commission charged the company with running a massive Ponzi scheme.
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