Broker Investigation: Laurence Torres

Laurence TorresLaurence Torres (CRD#: 2821373) is a previously registered broker. Most recently, Mr. Torres was employed at First Standard Financial Capital (2014-2016), Alexander Capital (2012-2014), Brookstone Securities (2009-2012), J.P. Turner & Company (2009), and VFinance Investments (2007-2009). For all of these listed brokerage firms, Mr. Torres was based in Staten Island, New York.

In March of 2017, Laurence Torres was suspended by FINRA for failing to comply with the terms of a FINRA arbitration award. This is a serious violation of securities industry rules. Under FINRA Rule 9554, brokers and brokerage firms must always abide by the terms of arbitration awards or settlement agreements.

In September of 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) barred Mr. Torres from associating with any broker-dealer in any capacity. According to the SEC, Mr. Torres engaged in excessive trading (churning) on the accounts of at least eight investors.

SEC Enforcement Action: Laurence Torres

The SEC determined that Mr. Torres violated federal securities laws by repeatedly recommending that his customers engage in a costly pattern of high-frequency trading. He had no reasonable basis to believe that such a pattern made any financial sense for his investors. In addition, the SEC determined that Mr. Torres also made unauthorized trades in customer accounts. This conduct amounts to ‘churning’. He was trading so frequently that investor losses were all but guaranteed. Meanwhile, Mr. Torres was raking in substantial commissions and fees for himself. As a result of the misconduct, the SEC has instituted the following sanctions against Laurence Torres:

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