Cecil Ross (CRD#: 2391047), a registered representative with International Assets Advisory LLC (CRD#: 10645) in San Angelo, Texas, has been suspended by FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, according to his BrokerCheck record accessed on January 16, 2020.
On December 18, 2019, Cecil Ross entered into an Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent (AWC) with FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, in which he consented to a four-month suspension and to FINRA’s findings that he recommended that the majority of his clients roll over their UIT (unit investment trust) positions after less than one year, despite the cost to the customer of buying a new unit investment trust. FINRA also found that Cecil Ross’s conduct led customers to incur significant, unnecessary sales charges.
What is a unit investment trust and why should investors take care before investing in one? A unit investment trust (UIT) is a company that holds a group of securities (typically stocks and bonds), selling them to investors as redeemable units for a set amount of time. A UIT can be appealing to investors because the required initial investment is low. Furthermore, UITs typically have lower management fees than mutual funds, as UITs are not actively traded. In this case, however, Cecil Ross’s clients still allegedly incurred significant fees because Cecil Ross allegedly convinced them to quickly purchase new UITs, paying new sales charges. A copy of the Letter of Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent (AWC) can be viewed here.
This is not the only regulatory event or customer complaint on Cecil Ross’s BrokerCheck record. On June 3, 2014, Cecil Ross lost a FINRA arbitration. A client alleged that Cecil Ross sold unsuitable investments and churned their account (trading excessively to generate excessive commissions). The client requested $904,431 in damages. FINRA arbitrators granted $100,000 in damages to Cecil Ross’s client. A copy of the arbitration award can be viewed here.
Over his 26-year career in the securities industry, Cecil Ross has worked for six broker-dealers. In addition to his current position at International Assets Advisory LLC (CRD#: 10645), he has also worked for the following brokerage firms:
- LPL Financial, LLC (CRD#: 6413)
- Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. (CRD#: 6694)
- Edward Jones (CRD#: 250)
- Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (CRD#: 7691)
- Edward D. Jones & Co., L.P. (CRD#: 250)
If Cecil Ross was your broker and you have concerns about your investments, please don’t hesitate to contact a securities attorney. Call (877) 238-4175 or email email@example.com for your free case consultation with the securities attorneys of Fitapelli Kurta.