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John Atchison: Virginia Beach Financial Advisor Suspended

A disciplinary action taken by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority against Virginia Beach, Virginia broker and investment advisor John Atchison (CRD# 1284207) suspended him over allegations he engaged in discretionary trading without proper authorization from his customers. A representative of Davenport & Company, Atchison was suspended for 15 days and issued a fine of $2,500.

According to a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (No. 2018059155703) dated July 2019, John Atchison was registered with Davenport & Company when, between February 2017 and January 2018, he effected a total of 42 discretionary trades in the accounts of 25 customers. FINRA’s findings state that none of the customers in whose accounts he executed discretionary trades had provided him with prior written authorization to exercise discretion, although some had provided express or implied authority to do so. FINRA states further that his member firm, Davenport & Company, had not given approval to any of the accounts for trading on a discretionary basis. FINRA found that these activities constituted violations of NASD Rule 2510(b), which forbids FINRA registered persons from engaging in discretionary trading in customer accounts “unless the customer has provided prior written authorization… and the representative’s firm has provided prior written acceptance of the account as a discretionary account.” The regulator also found these activities to constitute a violation of FINRA Rule 2010, which concerns high standards of commercial honor. As a result of the foregoing alleged conduct, Atchison was suspended from associating with any FINRA member firm in any capacity for 15 business days. He was also ordered to pay a fine of $2,500.

John Atchison is currently registered with Davenport & Company in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where he has been registered since 1994. He was previously registered with Prudential Securities in New York, New York and EF Hutton & Company. He currently holds 22 state licenses—including California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia—and has passed five securities industry qualification examinations.

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