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Michael Spolar: FINRA Suspended Orlando Financial Advisor

A disciplinary action taken by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority against former Orlando, Florida broker and investment advisor Michael Spolar (CRD# 2192992) suspended him over allegations he improperly exercised discretionary authority in client accounts. A former representative of International Assets Advisory, Spolar was suspended for 15 months.

According to a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (No. 2018057366101) dated July 2018, MIchael Spolar was registered with International Assets Advisory when, between August and September 2017, he exercised discretionary authority in the execution of four trades in two customer accounts. FINRA states that this activity shortly followed his completion of a one-month suspension “for exercising discretion without written authorization.” In these instances, he had not received written authorization from the customers to exercise discretion, and the accounts had not been approved by International Assets Advisory for discretionary trading. FINRA’s findings go on to state that three of the four trades involved options, and that he marked these trades as “unsolicited” when executing the orders, then “submitted a falsified Unsolicited Options Letter for each of the options trades.” He falsified the clients’ signatures on these letters, according to FINRA, before submitting them to his firm. FINRA found that these activities constituted violations of FINRA Rules 2510, 2360, 4511, and 2010. As a result of the foregoing alleged conduct, Michael Spolar was suspended from associating with any FINRA member firm in any capacity for 15 months.

Michael Spolar’s disclosure records also list ten settled and three pending customer complaints against him.

A 2018 complaint alleged that as a representative of LPL Financial, he made unsuitable investment recommendations and engaged in margin trading. The complaint reached a settlement in 2019 for $17,500.

A 2017 complaint alleged that as a representative of LPL Financial and International Assets Advisory, he recommended unsuitable products and executed trades on margin; the complaint reached a settlement of $65,000.

A 2016 complaint alleged that as a representative of LPL Financial, he executed unauthorized trades and recommended unsuitable stocks; the complaint reached a settlement of $101,500.

A pending 2018 complaint alleges that as a representative of International Assets Advisory, he failed in his supervisory duties, engaged in unjust enrichment, violated securities industry rules, and acted negligently; the complaint alleges damages of $641,918.

Michael Spolar is currently not registered as a broker or investment advisor. His employment history includes International Assets Advisory in Orlando, Florida; LPL Financial in Beachwood, Ohio; Morgan Stanley in Pepper Pike, Ohio;  Morgan Stanley & Company in Beachwood, Ohio; Merrill Lynch in Pepper Pike, Ohio; Citigroup Global Markets in New York, New York; and Lehman Brothers in New York, New York. He currently holds zero state licenses and has passed four securities industry qualification examinations.

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