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UBS Rep Monty Cerf: $1.8 Million Award in Options Complaint
Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) records indicate that UBS Financial Services broker Monty Cerf (CRD# 2269462) has received several pending customer complaints concerning an allegedly unsuitable options strategy, as well as one complaint that concluded with an award to the investor. Cerf is registered with the firm’s office in New York City, and is also registered as an investment adviser. The pending complaints listed on his BrokerCheck report cumulatively seek damages of more than $13 million.
A 2020 complaint listed in Mr. Cerf’s BrokerChek report alleges that a UBS op the same investment strategy, which it also alleges was unsuitable and misrepresented. misrepresentation, unsuitability, fraud, breach of contract, and negligence in relation to the UBS Yield Enhancement Strategy. The complaint evolved into a FINRA arbitration proceeding, in which a panel issued an award of more than $1.8 million in damages to the claimants. In a comment on the disclosure, Mr. Cerf wrote that “This client complaint was lodged against my employer UBS, not against me and concerned a proprietary options strategy sold through marketing material and disclosures prepared by the firm,” stating further that he was not a named party in the action and did not contribute to the award.
A pending complaint listed in Cerf’s FINRA records was filed in June 2020. It alleges that an options overlay strategy investment was misrepresented and unsuitable. The listed time frame for the alleged misconduct is “2016-2020,” while Cerf was registered with UBS Financial Services. The complaint alleges damages of $700,000. Cerf’s “Broker Statement” on the disclosure states that he was not named as a party in the arbitration, and that he acted in the client’s best interests “at all times.”
A pending complaint filed in July 2020 alleges that recommendations to invest in and hold an options overlay strategy were unsuitable and misrepresented. This complaint alleges damages of $1 million.
Another pending complaint detailing the same allegations about the strategy was filed in October 2019, concerning activities between late 2016 and the present, while Cerf was a UBS representative. This complaint alleges damages of $5 million. Cerf wrote a “Broker Statement” on this disclosure as well, noting that he disagrees with the allegations, and that he was “not specifically named in the arbitration filing.”
A fourth pending complaint about the options strategy was filed in September 2019, alleging damages of $7 million. A fifth, on which Cerf has also written a note denying the allegations of unsuitability and misrepresentation, and noting that he was not named in the arbitration, seeks damages of $600,000.
Monty Cerf has been registered as a broker with UBS Financial Services in New York, New York since 2015. His previous registrations include Barclays Capital in New York, New York (2009-2015), Lehman Brothers in New York, New York (2008), JP Morgan Securities in New York, New York (2006-2007), Bear Stearns & Company in New York, New York (2001-2003), and JP Morgan Securities in New York, New York (1993-2000). He has passed six securities industry examinations and his BrokerCheck report lists 45 states securities licenses. (Information current as of May 11, 2022.)
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