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Armin Hinkelman: Thrivent Advisor Resigns After Investigation
Watertown, South Dakota financial advisor Armin Hinkelman (CRD# 1583833) recently resigned from his position at Thrivent Investment Management in connection with alleged rule violations. Records provided by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the Securities and Exchange Commission show that he is currently registered as an investment advisor with Vantage Financial Partners.
Mr. Hinkelman’s BrokerCheck report describes his departure from Thrivent Investment Management. According to a disclosure, he resigned following an internal investigation that found he “violated the Firm’s policies regarding unauthorized discretionary trading and was involved in an undisclosed outside business activity.” The disclosure adds further that he before the firm informed him of the outcome of its review, he “voluntarily resigned.”
For reference, FINRA Rule 3260 describes specific conditions under which representatives like Mr. Hinkelman are permitted to participate in discretionary trading, that is, the completion of securities trades without prior consultation with the investor. FINRA explains in its investor resources that the use of discretion “generally means the broker can decide at any time how much of a stock, bond or other security to buy or sell, and at what price, without customer input.” According to Rule 3260, brokers are forbidden from exercising discretionary authority without the customer’s prior written authorization and their member firm’s acceptance of the account in question as discretionary. The firm’s acceptance should be “evidenced in writing by the member or the partner, officer or manager, duly designated by the member,” according to the rule. Brokers who improperly engage in discretionary trading may be held liable for damages and/or subject to disciplinary action.
According to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the Securities and Exchange Commission, Armin Hinkelman holds 35 years of securities industry experience. Based in Watertown, South Dakota, he has been registered as an investment advisor with Vantage Financial Partners since April 2023. He was previously registered with Thrivent Investment Management in Watertown from 1987 until 2023. His credentials include the passage of six securities industry qualifying exams: the Investment Company Products/Variable Contracts Principal Examination, or Series 26; the Investment Company Products/Variable Contracts Representative Examination, or Series 6; the General Securities Representative Examination, or Series 7; the Securities Industry Essentials Examination, or SIE; the Uniform Securities Agent State Law Examination, or Series 63; and the Uniform Combined State Law Examination, or Series 66. He is licensed in South Dakota. (Information current as of April 8, 2023.)
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