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Andrew Elsoffer: Beachwood Advisor Suspended by FINRA
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority recently sanctioned ex-Stifel Nicolaus representative Andrew Elsoffer. FINRA and Securities and Exchange Commission records show that Mr. Elsoffer is a financial advisor with International Assets Advisory Management in Beachwood, Ohio.
According to a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent (No. 2018060469601) issued in February 2022, Mr. Elsoffer was registered with Stifel Nicolaus when, between February 2012 and October 2018, he exercised discretion without proper written authorization in the accounts of five customers. FINRA found that he exercised discretion over the course of 2,800 in the customers’ accounts, and that although they were aware he was trading in their accounts, they had not provided him with written authorization to do so, nor had the firm accepted the accounts in question as discretionary. FINRA found that these trades constituted violations of FINRA rules forbidding the use of discretionary authority without prior written authorization from the customers and the firm’s written acceptance of the accounts for discretionary trading.
FINRA’s findings state further that Mr. Elsoffer loaned a sum of $13,703 to a customer who was also a close friend, without notifying or receiving approval from Stifel Nicolaus & Company. Finally, FINRA’s findings state that Elsoffer provided false statements to FINRA regarding reimbursement checks he received from the customer. As a result of these findings, FINRA fined Elsoffer $15,000 and suspended him from associating with any FINRA member firm in any capacity for a period of two years.
Mr. Elsoffer’s BrokerCheck report discloses two employment separations. In 2018 Stifel Nicolaus fired him in relation to a “Loss of confidence following the settlement of an arbitration and violation of the firm’s policy prohibiting receipt of customer funds into an employee’s account.” Prior to that, Merrill Lynch terminated him in 2011 in relation to allegations he failed to follow firm directives and violated firm policy regarding discretion.
FINRA records additionally disclose seven investor complaints against Mr. Elsoffer. The most recent complaint, filed in 2020, alleged that as a representative of Stifel Nicolaus, he committed fraud, acted negligently, breached his fiduciary duty, and breached contract; the complaint reached a settlement of $20,000. A complaint filed in 2016, meanwhile, alleged that he committed fraud, misrepresented material facts, breached his fiduciary duty, recommended unsuitable investments, committed elder abuse and exploitation, and breached contract as a Stifel Nicolaus rep, settling for $165,000. An earlier complaint, filed in 2009, alleged that he recommended unsuitable investments, eventually reaching a settlement of $75,000.
According to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Andrew Elsoffer holds 27 years of securities industry experience. Based in Beachwood, Ohio, he has been a financial advisor with International Assets Advisory Management since 2018. His past registrations include Stifel Nicolaus (Pepper Pike, Ohio; 2011-2018) and Merrill Lynch (Pepper Pike, Ohio; 1995-2001). His credentials include the passage of four securities industry qualifying exams: the Uniform Investment Adviser Law Examination, or Series 65; the Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination, or Series 63; the Securities Industry Essentials Examination, or SIE; and the General Securities Representative Examination, or Series 7. He is not presently licensed as a broker. (Information current as of May 17, 2022.)
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