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Oregon’s Investor Defender Seeks Transparency

Robert S. Banks Jr. is a Portland securities litigator making news in The New York Times for his efforts to shine a light on how the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”) manages expungement requests. The article highlights the concern over FINRA’s BrokerCheck service for investors to:

“Search for information about brokers and brokerage firms. Search for information about investment adviser firms and representatives. Obtain online background reports, if available. Link to additional resources such as educational tools for investors.”

Mr. Banks emphasized the importance of keeping accurate broker records as “an important part of the public’s trust in the brokerage industry.” As with other missteps in life, one can see where expungement may be appropriate, but with the case in the article the broker’s regulatory file included 41 customer complaints and a job termination. It’s difficult to paint that as a misstep.