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National Investment Firm Fined More than $42,000

Unlicensed employees giving investment advice

November 6, 2013

HELENA – Montana Securities Commissioner Monica J. Lindeen has fined a New York City-based broker dealer more than $42,000 after an investigation showed the company violated Montana securities law.

RBC Capital Markets LLC (RBC) failed to register certain administrative employees – even when those employees were giving investment advice and functioning as broker-dealers or salespersons. Additionally, the investigation alleged the company failed to provide sufficient oversight to ensure that unlicensed assistants were not working as de facto broker-dealers or salespersons.

“It doesn’t matter how big the firm is, every investment company that does business in this state has to follow our laws,” Lindeen said. “That’s what Montana consumers expect; it’s what I expect and firms that break the law will be hearing from my office.”

The matter was settled late last week after the conclusion of a multi-state investigation. The investigation alleged that throughout the nation RBC employed a class of workers called “client associates” which often functioned as broker-dealers or salespersons or did work that only a registered broker-dealer or salesperson who has the training and licensure could perform. The client associates were not registered in Montana – or many other states – as required by law.

RBC has settled the violations with Montana and several other states involved in the investigation. The company was fined $42,520 to resolve the matter.

RBC has branch offices in Billings, Great Falls and Missoula.